This fresh, new programme for 2017 is a collaboration between the School of GeoSciences and the School of Social and Political Sciences.
The world is facing an ‘energy trilemma’; how to achieve energy security, energy equity and environmental sustainability. Whilst equipping students with an active understanding of low carbon technologies, policies and markets, this new MSc programme is focused squarely on analysing the social, societal and environmental dimensions of energy transitions. You will examine how citizens are involved in and are affected by changes in energy systems.
On a more theoretical level, the programme will enable you to relate supply-side issues to geo-politics and political economy, whilst energy demand will be studied in relation to broader challenges of sustainable consumption.
On a more practical level you will explore the potential of ‘smart’ ICT to affect consumption and inform strategic choices in sustainable living at household and community level. With Scotland being a world leader in renewable electricity generation (especially wind and marine), but also being economically dependent on declining North Sea oil and gas and suffering from high levels of energy poverty, this interdisciplinary MSc. benefits from close access to a high number of insightful case studies, which will serve to examine links between global and local issues, explore international best practices and identify locally suited pathways to more sustainable energy management.
Applicants receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, will be asked to pay a tuition fee deposit of £1,500. Please see the fees and costs section for more information.
The programme has been designed to develop transdisciplinary perspectives on the energy trilemma and integrative analytical skills (qualitative and quantitative) which are in short supply in the energy sector. The full-time programme is divided into two semesters of taught courses, followed by a field trip at Easter before the dissertation period over the summer. We are happy to accommodate different working patterns for part-time students, including a half day a week schedule for three-year part time study.
The programme consists of four core modules (20 credits each, two core courses per semester), two optional modules (20 credits, one for each semester) and a 60 credit dissertation.
Students will also undertake one 20 credit course per semester. The University of Edinburgh offers an unrivalled selection of relevant optional courses for the MSc in Energy, Society and Sustainability. Bearing in mind your particular background and interests, the Programme Director will assist you in your choice from a large menu of optional courses related to six potential specialisation pathways; sustainable technologies and economics, politics, development, environmental sustainability, science and technology and public policy.
Optional courses may include*:
**Please note, courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.
The programme aims for students to develop transdisciplinary skills in the assessment of the transition potential of energy systems towards greater sustainability, focussing especially on the human dimension of technological change and working and experimenting with energy users to co-produce knowledge about pathways to change.
Upon successful completion of the programme, students will have gained:
UK research councils cite a major skills gap in the energy sector, one of the biggest growth sectors within the UK economy in recent years. Demand has never been higher for sound evidence on behavioural change, public engagement with energy issues, and public support for community and commercial investments in low carbon energy generation. We train our graduates to translate complex science into effective policies and new business opportunities. We have strong links with government departments, energy relevant NGOs and key industry players who want to make use of these skills. Committed to helping you meet prospective employers and network with those active in the field, we organise careers events and encourage dissertations conducted in partnership with external organisations.
The Master in Global Energy Transition and Governance aims to give a deep understanding of the complexity of the current energy transformations in Europe and worldwide. The programme offers a unique, multidisciplinary approach which distinguishes it from other Master courses in the field of energy studies: It analyses the links between the different levels of energy governance, from an international to a local level, offering problem-focused learning at the crossroads of theory and practice. The one-year Master programme stretches over three terms and takes place in two study locations: Nice and Berlin. Working language is English.
The first term in Nice encompasses classes on the basics of the four energy modules (International energy governance, Economic energy governance, the EU energy governance and Energy and territories). Each module is complemented by seminars dealing with current energy issues. An academic or professional expert is invited for each event.
For their second term students move on to Berlin where teaching in the four modules continues in the form of workshops. Each module organises a half-ay workshop with an expert. Students prepare the workshops in group work delivering papers on themes linked to the topic of the seminar (climate negotiations, energy stock exchange, the role of the EU interconnections in the European energy market, the EU funds and the territorial energy policy). To better understand the local energy challenges in the framework of the German Energy Transition Field, visits will also be organised in co-peration with local institutions and companies. Another focus of this term will be put on the methodology classes, one dedicated to the research work and the Master'sthesis, the second one to project management.
In April students return to Nice. The third term aims at deepening their knowledge on the four energy modules. A special focus is also given to the methodological support for the students' work on their thesis including individual meetings with the academic supervisors. In the two simulations the participants will forge their negotiation techniques with regard to the construction of wind farms at local level and work out of a strategy for an international energy cooperation. Written and oral exams in June will conclude this term.
During this term students will finalise their work on their thesis in close contact with their academic supervisors. The thesis will be delivered in mid-June and defended at the end of June.
This module delivers the theoretical knowledge on the main international energy related issues and conflicts (resource curse, neoinstitutionalism, developmentalism, weak/strong States etc.).
It also provides the participants with concrete examples of the emergence and regulation of energy conflicts worldwide in order to analyse better how they exert pressure on the security and diversification of the energy supply.
Economic and market fundamentals are applied to the energy sector in order to understand the current multiple national, regional, and local low carbon energy pathways in the world.
The module examines how the different markets are regulated and how they influence the transitions from fossil fuels to renewable energies. The economic perspective will highlight the role of liberalisation, privatisation and regulation of the sector.
The aim of this module is to highlight the EU priorities and its decision-making process regarding clean energy transition in Europe, thus helping to understand political economy factors that both inhibit and accelerate it.
While focusing on how the different EU policies challenge institutional architectures and multilevel governance schemes, the module provides an insight into issues currently facing European policy makers such as social acceptance, sustainability of renewable energies as well as rapid advancement in clean energy technologies.
Participants will examine how EU regions and cities and more generally territories develop their own low carbon strategy at the crossroads of many policies (housing, waste management, transport, fuel poverty, environment and energy) and in the framework of a multilevel governance system.
Concrete examples of local and regional strategies will be delivered in order to analyse the levers and obstacles for more decentralisation.
Students will acquire skills in research methodology, energy project management and the elaboration of energy strategies. They will concretely experiment different methodological tools: first of all through the research work for their thesis, second thanks to the methodological tools of project management. Students will be involved in a simulation game in which they will have to decide on the construction of a wind park in a territory. In a negotiation game, participants will have to elaborate a common strategy in the perspective of international energy cooperation.
For their thesis participants will carry out a profound research work on an energy issue, chosen and elaborated in regular coordination with their supervisor.
The thesis will require the application of the methodological tools which the students have acquired during the programme.
The academic work will involve in-depth desk research, possible interviews with external partners and the writing of a thesis of approximately 17,000 words. Candidates will defend their thesis in an oral exam.
Candidates can submit their application dossier by using the form available on the Institute'swebsite. They should also include all the relevant documents, or send them by post or email. An academic committee meets regularly in order to review complete applications.
A limited number of scholarship funds can be awarded to particularly qualified candidates to cover some of the costs related to studies or accommodation. The deadline for applications is: 15 September 2017.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for any enquiry.