ERMA, European Regional Master's Programme in Democracy and Human Rights in South East Europe

Application deadline: 15 September 2022

What is ERMA


The Global Campus South East Europe - European Regional Master’s Programme in Democracy and Human Rights in South East Europe (GC SEE/ERMA) is a one year interdisciplinary Master’s programme coordinated by the University of Sarajevo (UNSA), Center for Interdisciplinary Studies (CIS) and the University of Bologna (UNIBO), Department of Political and Social Sciences. GC SEE/ERMA is a proud member of the Global Campus of Human Rights, an interdisciplinary center of excellence supported by the EU and other partner institutions, whose main aim is to continually promote human rights and democratization through education, specialized training, and research cooperation worldwide. It has a broad network of academic partners within seven regional headquarters in Pretoria, Beirut, Bangkok, Yerevan, Buenos Aires, Sarajevo/Bologna and Venice.

The Global Campus South East Europe/ERMA is financed by the European Union through the Global Campus of Human Rights. Likewise, for almost two decades, the programme was co-financed and supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy and the Italian Development and Cooperation Agency (AICS).

​​Master Details

ERMA is based on the long-lasting cooperation of 11 partner universities from the SEE region and Europe, under the coordination by the University of Sarajevo and the University of Bologna. Students receive diplomas from both coordinating universities after having obtained ECTS.

ERMA offers an intensive one year experience in the field of democracy and human rights studies with specific regional focus on the SEE. Recognizing that human rights are a crosscutting theme among different disciplines of study, such as political science, social sciences, law, sociology, and philosophy, ERMA nurtures strong interdisciplinary approach.

The students benefit from studying together with colleagues from all over the region, European Union and rest of the world, and have the chance to:

  • Benefit full scholarships covering tuition fees, living and travel expenses
  • Study in a highly international and multicultural environment
  • Experience advanced learning combined with empirical workshops, exercises, and skill-building semiars
  • Participate in comprehensive courses on methodology of academic research and writing
  • Benefit from full academic assistance by a team of academic tutors
  • Acquire working and research experience throughout the 6-week internship period in countries of the SEE
  • Take part in mobility period at the University of Bologna
  • Participate in the Global Campus joint activities
  • Receive awards for best MA thesis; best MA defense; MA thesis publication; and 6 months internship scholarship
  • Become members of the ERMA Alumni Network and the Global Campus Alumni Association

The degree programme is realized with the support of more than 40 lecturers, experts and practitioners from the 12 partner universities and associate regional and international organizations such as IGO`s, NGO`s, research institutes and think tanks.

The programme is managed by the International Academic Council, therefore coordinated by the Executive Board and implemented by the Administrative & Financial Unit, and the Academic & Development Unit based both in Sarajevo, in Forli'/Bologna and off-campus.

The academic consortium is composed of the following universities:

The ERMA programme is a point of reference for the teaching of human rights and democratization at university level in the SEE area, and one of the pioneer EU projects in the higher education sector in the post-conflict regional dimension.

In its almost 20 years of tradition, the programme has graduated over 500 human rights professionals, who rejoined their societies as agents of change.

The uniqueness of the structure and teaching curricula gives the opportunity to students to gain interdisciplinary knowledge and expertise but also offers the chance to acquire working and research experience in most of the key regional NGOs, governmental institutions, think-tanks, and academic institutions.

The courses on the methodology of academic research and writing, the assistance by the academic tutors and the intensive MA thesis field research and writing process, give a broad academic dimension to the programme, and allow students to develop the necessary skills of academic writing and research.

For purposes of mobility, cultural diversity, and flexibility students spend 45 days at the University of Bologna Residential Center of Bertinoro, where they complete their theses and foster multicultural skills and adaptability while living together. Moreover, the programme attracts students, scholars, and experts from the region and beyond establishing a global network of human rights professionals producing fruitful professional cooperation and life- long friendships among its graduates.

Admission Requirements

ERMA admits up to 36 students every academic year, from the following target groups:

Target group I 25 places are reserved for citizens of target countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and citizens of Kosovo-holders of passports of countries recognized by BiH.

Target group II 5 places are reserved for citizens Citizens of the European Union countries, Azerbaijan and the Russian Federation.

Target group III 6 places are reserved for self-funded students from other countries.

I Academic Background
The university degree of the applicants must be earned during studies lasting either 4 or 5 years ( 3 + 2 ) with a previously earned degree of a minimum 240 ECTS. Candidates must hold a university degree in social sciences and humanities, from an accredited university.

II English Language Proficency 
Candidates have to provide evidence of their English language proficiency.
The Master Programme recognizes the following international English Language certificates:

  • TOEFL – minimum 560 paper-based, 220 computer-based, 83 IBT;
  • IELTS – minimum band 6.5, no less than 6.0 in any of its subsections;
  • CAE and CPE Cambridge exams

Applicants with 1. English as a native language, 2. a university diploma in English language and literature, and 3. those who had previous university education in English language are exempted from providing a separate proficiency certificate. Such candidates shall submit transcripts or certificates issued by their respective universities.

Scholarships and Fees

Students from TG I (25 students from SEE) and TGII (5 students EU, Azarbaijan and the Russian Federation) receive the following financial support during their studies:

  • Study grants covering regular living costs (November to July) in the amount of 4.500€ gross.
  • Costs of lodging and dining (full board) covered by the programme during the term in Italy
  • Reimbursements (travel, health insurance, diploma recognition etc.) in the overall amount of 1.200€.

Students of TG III are self-funded. These students are expected to cover all their living and travel expenses as well as the costs of Term III lodging in Italy (3150 Euros). The students are encouraged to secure funding through other sources.

Depending on the number and the quality of applications, the Programme reserves the right to offer several self-funding places to TG II candidates.


TG I: No tuition fee. Enrollment costs 200€.
TG II: 2.000€.
TG III: 2.000€.


Learn more and apply:​