Ching-Yang Lin
Associate Professor and Program Director of IDP

Director’s Message

The educational purpose of the International Development Program (IDP) is to train students as analysts, practitioners and administrators who have acquired a scientific way of looking at important issues in society. Providing solutions to societal problems needs multiple perspectives in reality, but acquiring a scientific way to look at the problem gives students a powerful tool of how to analyze and solve it from an appropriate angle among many perspectives. The disciplines of social sciences such as economics and other quantitative methods that students will learn in the IDP equip students with such a long-lasting powerful analytical method, and make it possible for them to contribute to society by providing a rational approach to critical issues in society. To fulfill this objective, the IDP curriculum has authentic and rigorous sequences of courses, field trips and research activities. Each student also conducts a master thesis in which he or she has a chance to apply learned theories and scientific skills to an important problem of his or her choice. Like everything else, achieving something meaningful needs serious commitments. The IDP courses require the students to work hard for two years. By the time the students graduate, they are ready to look at societal problems as scientists or practitioners who are equipped with analytical skills, more logical and more scientific ways of thinking than before. As an evidence of excellent teaching and research conducted in the IDP, many master theses have been published in well-known academic refereed journals, which cannot be seen in any other master degree program in the world.