UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction


Risk, Disaster and Resilience MSc

A multi-disciplinary master's programme that equips you with an academic underpinning to your career relating to disaster risk reduction.

Application deadline

If you're thinking of applying for September 2024 entry, please make sure your application is received by 5 April (for students who require visas) and 30 August (for students who do not).

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Teaching and Learning

Learn from world-class researchers and professionals delivering the programme through a combination of lectures, class discussions, problem-solving exercises, practicals, field trips, directed reading, student-led dialogue, and a practitioner-led real-time disaster scenario event. Assessment is by individual and group presentations, coursework, written examinations, and a research project.

Programme Specific Themes

Physical and Social Science of Natural and Anthropogenic Hazards

  • What is known and unknown
  • Current research and uncertainties

Building Resilience

  • What are the barriers to risk and disasters reduction and how do we overcome them?
  • Develop a common language to communicate complex concepts in an accessible way


IRDR MSc themes

Understanding Vulnerability

  • From fragility curves describing damage to buildings to social vulnerability of individuals and society

Quantifying Risk

  • What is risk and how do we measure it?
  • Components of risk: exposure, hazard, vulnerability

Multidisciplinary Holistic Approaches

  • Integrating scientific knowledge into disaster risk reduction research, policy and practice
  • Communicating with stakeholders

Managing Disasters

  • How to apply plans to manage real emergencies

More information

For more details about this programme, including entry requirements, fees and how to apply, visit the UCL prospectus.

Find out more about the IRDR scholarships available for this year.

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Whether you wish to start a new career in risk and disaster reduction or you already have experience we are here to support you. With a Risk, Disaster and Resilience MSc you will have excellent academic credibility coupled with practical and analytical skills. We run an annual Careers Discovery Evening that offers expert and targeted advice, and hosts stalls from a range of employers and recruiters in the field of risk and disaster reduction. Our alumni are highly sought-after in the following sectors: insurance, catastrophe modelling , risk management, public policy, humanitarian development, NGOs, business continuity, government, emergency services, consultancy, and academia.

Some career destinations of recent IRDR graduates:

  • Disaster Risk Management Consultant, World Bank
  • Project Officer, Global Risk Forum Davos
  • Coastal Risk Management Officer, Environment Agency
  • Project Officer, Cairo Local Government
  • Field Delegate, Red Cross
  • Global Engagement Fellow, Interpeace
  • Resilience Technical Officer, International Medical Corps
  • Project Officer, Rescue Global
  • Emergency Information Management Specialist,
  • Plan Nepal
  • Business Continuity & Resilience Consultant, PwC
  • Business Continuity Consultant, Arup
  • Analyst, RMS (Risk Management Solutions)
  • Reinsurance Claims Management Executive
  • AXA Global Re, Paris
  • PhD student, NERC London Doctoral School