Global Social Change and Development

The Global Social Change and Development (GSCD) Program is geared toward students interested in gaining a critical understanding of urgent issues related to globalization and international development. GSCD provides students with a sophisticated set of research and critical-thinking skills, prepares students for twenty-first century professions, and helps them to become thoughtful global citizens. Ultimately, students in the Global Social Change and Development Program will graduate with majors in both international studies and sociology.

Key themes addressed in the program include:

  • Global inequality and development
  • Shifts in the global distribution of wealth and power and their implications for structures and norms of global governance
  • Urbanization, migration, and development
  • Land, labor, and environmental rights and struggles
  • The crisis of welfare states and the rise of a politics of austerity
  • The degree to which we as individuals and groups can influence global social change

Global Social Change and Development allows students to pursue a focused course of study while still benefiting from the interdisciplinary education provided by the International Studies major, which draws on the strengths of the Johns Hopkins University faculty in diverse fields including sociology, political science, history, economics, foreign languages and anthropology.

The program provides interested undergraduate students with a pathway into the Research Working Groups of the Arrighi Center for Global Studies by teaching the methodological and theoretical tools necessary to effectively collaborate with faculty and graduate students in Research Working Groups. Students who are interested in participating in Arrighi Center Research Working Groups should consult with their faculty advisor about how to prepare themselves.

Download the GSCD brochure.

Honors Information

Students may graduate with honors in both international studies and sociology.

To receive honors in both international studies and sociology:

  • Declare your intention to enroll in Senior Honors Program to your faculty adviser by the end of your junior year.
  • Enroll in the year-long Senior Honors Program (230.502) and complete an honors thesis.
  • Receive final approval of your honors thesis by faculty.
  • Have a 3.7 GPA or higher in your courses counted toward the double-major.
  • Complete the honors clearance checklists for both majors in the year you expect to graduate. Most commonly, this means after February 1 but not later than April 1 of your senior year. Failure to submit the checklists by this date will mean that you will not receive honors. (Note: These requirements are not related to general university honors. General university honors are automatically assigned to all students who graduate with a 3.5 or higher.)​