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COVID-19 update: This course will start online and continue on campus later. Read more

What will I learn?

The MA in Politics, Society and Economy of Asia takes a social science approach to the study of one or more countries or regions in modern or contemporary Asia.

Key knowledge of Asia

Learn about the most important forces at play in Asia today. This master's offers you both the flexibility to define your focus and an expansive curriculum of relevant topics from which to choose. Select your country or region, and explore it from diverse disciplinary perspectives – often using original source materials – including modern history, sociology, development economics, media studies, political science, international relations and anthropology.

Develop your language skills

Many organisations today rely on translators to communicate with Foreign organisations. Knowledge of an Asian language is highly valued by global organisations and can pave the way to a host of new career opportunities. During your master's, you have the option of taking intensive language courses in a modern-day language including Japanese, Indonesian, Chinese, Korean or Hindi.

Learn from internationally-acclaimed scholars

Expertise on Asia at Leiden University is internationally renowned, which means that you learn from scholars who are at the leading edge of the research in their field. Small classes allow for direct contact with these lecturers and the opportunity to share and debate your ideas with classmates. At Leiden, every individual counts, which is why all students receive one-on-one support and mentoring throughout their studies.

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

What our graduates do

Graduates of the MA in Politics, Society and Economy of Asia can offer expertise that is highly relevant to many organisations today. A selection of roles in which expertise on Asia is desirable include professions in journalism, publishing, international trade, marketing, business, public relations, education, development aid, and in government, multinationals and NGOs.

Some of the occupations of our graduates include:

  • Account manager at a translation agency
  • Project manager at a trading and consultancy company in India
  • Owner of a consultancy firm
  • Consultant at a defence and security company
  • Communications officer at an animation studio in Japan
  • Relations management officer at an organisation promoting internationalisation in education
  • Editor at an academic publishing house
  • Content editor at a booking website

Research Master's

If you aspire to pursue a PhD position or career as a researcher outside of academia you can apply for the two-year Research Master's in Asian Studies on completion of the programme.

A Leiden University degree

Leiden University Master's graduates are sought-after employees at (inter)national organisations. Our graduates are known for their combination of robust academic training, in-depth and relevant knowledge, and critical, multidisciplinary approach to problem-solving.

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Humanities

Study options

Full Time (1 Year)

Tuition fees
€17,716.00 (14,31,018) per year
Application deadline

Expected October 2022

More details

Start date

Expected September 2022


Leiden University

Rapenburg 70,



2311, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants need a BA or BSc degree (or equivalent) to be admitted to any of Leiden University’s master’s programmes. English-language proficiency: IELTS - 6.0; Toefl (internet based): 80 (component score: 20); Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE), or C1 Advanced (CAE): Cambridge component score of 169.

For international students

  • A copy of a valid passport or ID card
  • A copy of a Dutch residence permit (if applicable)
  • CV (résumé)
  • Language proficiency (if applicable)
  • Copies of diplomas and transcripts
  • Letter of motivation

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


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