Mauritius-Harvard University: Social and Environmental Diversity Research


Program Background

With the increased importance and influence attached to sustainable development worldwide, how to solve social and public problems with business approaches has become a hot topic in international community. At the same time, more and more Chinese choose to go to Africa.

This Harvard University-Africa practical research project is designed for students to conduct research on impact investing in Africa. This program place identifying the strengths of youth as a core value and adopts participatory learning approach. It provides a unique opportunity for global youth to learn by practicing on the field. The program builds partnership with international NGOs and environmental protection institutions and follows a cycle of “problem identification—research—solution design—implementation—feedback and evaluation. Through the program, participants will learn about the world and themselves in a deeper level which will further their success in the future.


Beijing—Mauritius, Africa—Harvard University in the U.S.


Available in winter and summer vacation


high school or college students (age older than 16) with good English skills

Recommended for

students who want to apply for programs in MPA/MPP/Social work/MPH/Education/
Educational Psychology/Environmental Science/Journalism/Economics/Photography

Course Features

Diving into hot international issues, developing practical solutions, experiencing Ivy League classes and enhancing your background

In this course, you will

  • You will work with and learn from international organizations and local African organizations on China-Africa-related issues. Practical experiences in African and academic learning from US institutions will help enhance your overall background;
  • You will see for yourself the real Africa and learn about the research results on Africa issues by top US research institutes. It’s a unique experience that will help you step out of your comfort zone and immerse yourself in an international environment with an inclusive and open mind. It will be a great learning experience as a global citizen;
  • You will gain knowledge on education, economy and sustainable development in Africa by “learning by doing”. You will sit in classroom in Stanford University with lessons learned and questions from your field research in African and experience academic environment in top US institutes;
  • You will learn about impact investing from perspectives of education, environment, industry upgrading. The program will provide you with professional training, both academic and practical. You will learn about the importance of different international issues and explore opportunities for further study/career in this field;
  • Program certificates, program participation letter signed by Harvard professor, recommendation letter for outstanding students and follow-up application assistance by Harvard alumni.


Academic Training and Preparation

One to two months before the program, students will get training and lectures led by local mentors, former diplomats (or scholars with same level). Academic advisors will work with students to produce a research plan before departing to Africa.

Icebreaking in Grand Bay

Icebreaking will be done in the well-known Grand Bay area in Mauritius. Students will learn more about education, demography, resources and environment of Mauritius and small islands of its kind. Teambuilding and group assignment will be conducted there.

Field Research

Students will conduct independent field research with the help of local academic advisor. Students will learn about related methods and methodology and learn how to pose a question, conduct literature review, prepare and implement a research, analyze research materials and write report. Research plans will be revised with the progress of field research.

Talk about the development of Africa with young African leaders from 40 countries

Students will have the opportunity to visit local academic and research institutes on impact investing. Discussion with experts will help students to form their own view on impact investing in Africa, especially in small islands and a culturally-diverse environment based on their analysis of problems emerged in the development of sustainable business and urgent need of local NGOs. Participants will also be paired with local students who focus on environmental protection and economic environment, through which percipients can also experience the local culture.

Lectures and Discussions In Ivy League Universities

Students will take the results of their field research in Africa with their learnings and questions to Harvard University and attend lectures by renowned scholars on economic and sustainable development.

Project Presentation In the U.S.

Students will deliver group presentation to academic advisors on their research results on campus. This will also enhance students’ capacity to conduct analysis, write academic reports and speak in public. Academic advisory team from Ivy League will review the presentations and provide comments. Advisors will issue certificates to participants.

Interested students, please leave your contact information here!