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Course Description

Are you interested in a career in which you can address spatial and environmental challenges such as climate change or transnational river management which require cooperation between different regions? The joint Master’s programme in PLANET Europe can help you achieve this with its focus on the European dimension of spatial planning, spatial and environmental policy and regional economic development.

The influence of EU policies and actions on spatial and environmental planning in the EU member states is ever increasing. European regions are more and more interlinked, and cooperation across national borders is now a routine aspect of the work of spatial planners. This European dimension of planning requires a new generation of graduates, who can respond to, as well as influence, EU and international policy, who are sensitive to cultural and institutional differences, and who are capable of cooperating with colleagues in other European countries.

In the first year of your PLANET Europe studies, you’ll get a theoretical grounding in multi-level governance, institutional perspectives and comparative analysis at two of the partner universities. In the second year, you’ll combine your academic studies with professional experience, and conclude your studies with independent Master’s thesis research.

The PLANET Europe Master’s programme prepares you for a career as spatial and environmental planner within research, consultancy and policy making. Our graduates could work at universities or for EU institutions, national and regional public authorities, private companies and NGOs dealing with spatial planning, regional policy and environmental planning.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/planet-europe

Why study PLANET Europe?

- You’ll participate in a unique collaborative and integrated European Master’s programme specialising in the rich and dynamic area of European spatial planning.
- You’ll acquire the important skills and knowledge in this field while at the same time benefiting from Europe’s cultural and linguistic diversity.

- You can choose whether you want to focus more on economic development or on the sustainable development of spatial planning and spatial development.

- You’ll be awarded two Master of Science degrees, depending on your specialisation:
1.MSc in Spatial Planning or MSc in Social and Political Sciences of the Environment from Radboud University (60 EC).
2.MSc in Spatial Planning from the Blekinge Institute of Technology (120 EC), or MSc in European Spatial Planning and Environmental Policy from Cardiff University (120 EC).

- You’ll be taught in a stimulating, collegial setting with small groups of international students and by internationally recognised professors in their specific fields.

- You’ll have a chance to live in the Netherlands and either Wales or Sweden in your first year of studies, and possibly other countries during your second year. By having lived in different countries and having attended two different universities, you’ll have acquired an exceptional international learning experience.

Programme and specialisations

The programme starts with a comprehensive introduction on the European dimension of spatial planning and the spatial impacts of EU policies in the first semester at Radboud University in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. In the second semester you’ll go on to specialise (a choice that needs to made during the application process):
1. European Spatial Planning and Sustainable Development
At Cardiff University, Wales, United Kingdom
This specialisation focuses more on sustainable development in policy and practice in the European Union.

2. European Spatial Planning and Regional Economic Development
At Blekinge Institute of Technology, Karlskrona, Sweden
This specialisation focuses more on the regional economical developments and on innovation and cohesion in the European Union.

In the third semester, you’ll apply your newly acquired academic knowledge to planning practice. You’ll complete the programme with an individual Master’s thesis on a topic of your choice under joint supervision from experts from two of the universities.

Prospective students and career opportunities

The need for internationally qualified spatial and environmental planners with a solid knowledge of EU policy, sustainable development, economic competitiveness and territorial cooperation is widely recognised by national, regional and international organisations. European regions are increasingly interlinked, and cooperation across national borders on spatial development issues is now a routine aspect of the work of planning practitioners. There are numerous examples of such transboundary spatial issues that require cooperation in the fields of environment, transport or economic development.

The rise of cross-national comparative research in the field of spatial and environmental planning over recent years is proof of the increasing interest in policy transfer and lesson drawing from other countries in both planning practice and academia. Moreover, the influence of EU policy and law, e.g. in the field of environment, transport or agriculture/rural policy, on spatial development is ever increasing, and a large part of the work of planners now is of EU or international origin.

Thus, there is great demand for spatial and environmental planners with a thorough knowledge of the European and international policy context. Yet despite these trends towards a Europeanisation of spatial and environmental planning, planning practice still remains rooted in national approaches and mindsets. Consequently, planning graduates often do not find themselves well equipped to engage successfully in European territorial cooperation or to consider appropriate responses to implement EU policy and legislation.

The exciting Master's programme: 'PLANET Europe: European spatial planning, environmental policies and regional development', therefore provides graduates with substantive knowledge about the influences of EU and international policy on spatial development, and with the theoretical and methodological tools to shape the EU territorial cohesion agenda. Graduates develop cross-national communication skills and be able to work in interdisciplinary and multi-cultural teams. Such highly-skilled graduates who are well prepared for the new challenges of undertaking spatial and environmental planning in the EU will be an important asset for the European labour market and employers in the field. Graduates from this Master's programme can work in European or international organisations, national and regional public authorities, private companies and NGOs dealing with spatial planning, regional policy and environmental planning. Because of the international orientation and the thorough academic foundation of the Masters programme, graduates are also well prepared to pursue an academic career and undertake doctoral research.

Visit the PLANET Europe page on the Radboud University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Ludmila Girardi Alves (Brazil)

"My motivation to apply for the PLANET Europe Master’s programme was to live a lifetime experience learning from institutions with internationalization praises and cutting-edge research in the areas of sustainable spatial planning. This Master has a unique formation structure, which will allow me to participate actively on scientific research, deepening my knowledge of the European spatial organization, and to have the opportunity to apply the acquired knowledge during the internship, working in an international environment and handling activities in different languages. For the next couple of years, I am looking forward to acquire deeper theoretical basis and to develop research skills using real case studies of the European space. I am interested on studying the potential of digital-based organization for sustainable spatial planning, learning how to compare realities on a global context. The experience so far in the lovely city of Nijmegen has confirmed the expectations to live in an innovative and high organized society, at the same time located in the most ancient province of the Netherlands. This is the perfect place and scenario to work hard in a very competent and cool environment, at the same time to have lots of fun along with people from various regions of the world, literally changing our perspectives! I'm very excited about the experience that lies ahead with the great support of the PLANET team, teachers and cohort 4 colleagues!"

(Student Profile)

Essa Bataineh (Jordan)

"This program has been above and beyond my expectations so far, I’m really happy that I made the right choice by coming here.

As a student from the Middle East, PLANET Europe program will not only allow me to learn about the European spatial planning and experience European culture by intimately interacting with people and professionals, but also by sharing the routine day-to-day experiences. It’s been almost a month here so far and I’m already able to get a taste of what that would be like. I now know from experience that it is the best way to gain perspective and genuinely appreciate what it is like walk in foreign shoes. This opportunity allows me to utilize the theoretical architectural background I have acquired, and expand this knowledge with a greater understanding of the cultural and political framework of Europe. In an academic atmosphere, with the ability to freely exchange ideas under an umbrella of academic integrity and intellectual freedom, I will develop a more sophisticated perspective as a participant in this program."

(Student Profile)

Chang Xu (China)

"Studying in two different countries, the Netherlands and the UK, is really a tempting reason for me to join this program at beginning. However, when I indeed start my graduate life, I find more valuable things in this process. Firstly, there are many international students of such varying background in our class and it is interesting things to share perspectives, experiences and culture with others. It enables me to broaden my horizon and gives me more chance to learn about other culture deeply. What’s more, communication with classmates and professionals is an assist for me to deepen my understanding about policy in European Union. I can have a comprehensive thinking about the role of spatial planning and how it run in Europe. Besides, the interactive and opening mode of teaching is different from the way of my previous bachelor studying. Participating in group discussion provides us more ability to analysis and solve problem, which is essential quality for a will-be planner.

My bachelor major is landscape architecture and I just have some courses about urban planning. Although this program is not very match my previous major, the curriculum about cross-culture and cross-government cooperation and spatial planning is still appealing me, which, I think, can give me a deep understanding about how the planning policy act at a broader stage and stimulate the countries development. This knowledge can be used for reference when we tackle some issues in my country China. So I believe I will have an invaluable experience in the Netherlands as well as the UK."

(Student Profile)

Thijs Fikken (Netherlands)

"Over the last few years my interest in international planning, policies and cross-border cooperation has grown significantly. During my bachelor Human Geography and Urban and Regional Planning in Groningen I nurtured this interest, and I expect it to flourish during the Planet Europe program. The international academic atmosphere of the program is a perfect basis for a career within European spatial planning. It is a great opportunity to meet different people from different cultures and learn about their alternate perspectives on planning and policy. Within the program I hope to expand my knowledge of border regions, EU policy and European planning and regional economic development in general. Moreover, the chance to study abroad in different academic systems and my natural curiosity combine to make this a wonderful learning experience!"


Fullbright-Radboud Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

The Fulbright Center, sponsored by Radboud University, is offering scholarships to excellent American students for study and research purposes at graduate and PhD levels at Radboud University Nijmegen. The Fulbright Center's mission is to promote mutual understanding between Dutch and American citizens by providing financial assistance for study, research and teaching. To qualify for a scholarship, applicants must have American nationality, have excellent academic marks, engage in extracurricular activities and be admitted to Radboud University Nijmegen.The grant will be paid in 12 monthly instalments of €1050. International travel will be reimbursed up to a maximum of €900. The cost of the residence permit (approximately €350) will be covered as well. An extra allowance of €1150 will be paid on arrival, and can be used to cover the cost of the tuition fee or the costs of settling in. Tuition fees are not waived, and differ per program.
Application for 2016-2017 opens on 1 May 2016 and closes on 13 October 2016.

Value of Scholarship(s)

12 monthly instalments of €1050 + extra allowance for travel and additional costs


For American students.
The Fulbright Centre, sponsored by Radboud University, is offering scholarships for talented American students to study at Radboud University.

Application Procedure

For more information please see the Fulbright website.

Further Information



The Holland Scholarship Programme - 12 Awards

The Holland Scholarship (HS) gives excellent students the opportunity to study at Radboud University. The HS is open to students with the following nationalities: Canadian, American, Indian and Turkish. All English-taught Master’s programmes are eligible for the HS and amount to € 5,000.-

Value of Scholarship(s)

The scholarship amounts to £ 3.700


The HS is open to students with the following nationalities: Canadian, American, Indian and Turkish. All English-taught Master’s programmes are eligible for the HS.

Application Procedure

You can apply for the Holland Scholarship at Radboud University when you apply for a Master's programme in Osiris. That means that the application for admission and the application for the scholarship are fully integrated.
The application deadline is 1 February. If not all scholarships will be given out, the second deadline is 1 May.

Further Information



Erasmus Mundus Scholarship for the Master's in PLANET Europe - No. of awards TBC

Erasmus Mundus is a scholarship programme operated by the European Union. It offers scholarships to talented students from inside and outside the EU. Erasmus Mundus is a cooperation and mobility programme in the field of higher education that aims to enhance the quality of European higher education and to promote dialogue and understanding between people and cultures through cooperation with third-countries.This Erasmus Mundus scholarship at Radboud University Nijmegen is available for the Joint Master's Programme PLANET Europe, a two-year full-time integrated European Master's programme on European spatial planning, environmental policies and regional development.Several Erasmus Mundus scholarships (both non-EEA and EEA, funded with support from the European Commission) are offered within the programme. Students will, during their Master's programme, travel to Radboud University Nijmegen (The Netherlands), Cardiff University (United Kingdom) and/or Blekinge University (Sweden).This scholarship covers travel, participation, subsistence costs, and, in addition, EEA students receive €500 and non-EEA students receive €1,000 per month for other expenses. This scholarship is allocated for a particular programme, cannot be used to study in different programme and is available for a limited number of students.This scholarship is for excellent students, and requires excellent grades in students' previous education, good motivation and recommendation letters, etc. The deadline to apply for this scholarship is 1st December.

Value of Scholarship(s)

covers travel, participation, subsistence costs and a certain amount of other expenses


This Erasmus Mundus scholarship at Radboud University Nijmegen is available for the Joint Master's Programme PLANET Europe, a two-year full-time integrated European Master's programme on European spatial planning, environmental policies and regional development.

Application Procedure

More information on this Master's programme, the scholarship, and how to apply can be found at the offical PLANET Europe website.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

At least a bachelor degree in spatially oriented social science disciplines such as spatial planning, human or economic geography, environmental planning, or other relevant social sciences equal to the educational standards set by the European Higher Education Area and higher education partners in the programme and consortium. English language proficiency: If your first language is not English, you will be required to provide proof of English language competency, for example, IELTS, Cambridge EFL examination, or TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). For more information on our requirements with respect to the various tests, please see our website.

Course Fees

€4000,00 (from EEA countries); €8000,00 (from non EEU countries)

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