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Science, Engineering and Public Policy - MPA

Course Description

This MPA is designed to train professionals who want to be leaders in navigating decision-making at the intersection of science, engineering and public policy. Students undertake a major live project associated with a real world science and engineering policy challenge and have opportunities to learn from policy practitioners, industry experts and UCL researchers.

Degree information

Students are taught the conceptual frameworks, policy analysis tools and analytical methods to creatively develop policies relevant to science and engineering contexts. Students also study how policies are implemented, evaluated and revised in policy cycles. A focus on leadership and the development of professional skills is emphasised throughout.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of four core modules (105 credits), one optional module (15 credits), an elective module (15 credits), and a Major Group Project module (45 credits).

Core modules - students undertake three core modules with students from sister MPA programmes, and a specialist module.
-Introduction to Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy
-Analytical Methods for Policy
-Negotiations, Meditation and Diplomacy
-Evidence, Institutions and Power

Optional modules - students select one optional STEaPP module from the following:
-Science, Technology and Engineering Advice in Practice
-Risk Assessment and Governance
-Communicating Science for Policy

Students will then also select one further 15-credit graduate module which is relevant to their degree of study. This module can be selected from any UCL department.

MPA Group Policy Project
In the Group Project, students work with an external client on a relevant policy challenge. With the support of STEaPP faculty, the multidiscipinary student groups work together to produce an analysis that meets their clients' needs.

Teaching and learning
The programme combines innovative classroom teaching methods with unique scenario-based learning, enabling students to dynamically engage with real-world policy challenges. Scenarios are designed to help students consolidate knowledge and develop essential practical skills and their understanding of principles.


Graduates with Science, Engineering and Public Policy MPA degrees typically work in government agencies, corporate regulatory affairs departments or within advocacy groups doing legislative, regulatory or policy analysis. The career path for this type of profession begins as research or policy assistant, moves through policy or research analyst, then to technical consultant or project director or other senior professional roles. Ambitious candidates can work toward top-level positions such as assistant secretary or executive director.

Through the MPA programme, students will:
-Gain a greater awareness of current issues and developments in innovation, development, science, technology and engineering.
-Develop a greater awareness of the knowledge systems underpinning successful policymaking processes.
-Learn how to communicate with scientists and engineers, policy makers and industry experts.
-Develop the skills to mobilise development, technology and innovation policy, and science and engineering knowledge and expertise to address societal challenges.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Science and engineering are at the center of an increasing number of policy issues that affect every aspect of society. This unique and practical programme offers experiential learning for the skills and knowledge that leaders need to navigate policymaking at the intersection with science and engineering.

Students undertake a week-long scenario activity on the policymaking process where they engage with external experts and UCL academics. Students go on to undertake a nine-month major project on a policy challenge for a real world client. Example policy areas include resources, energy, waste, transport, or communications

Students also network with their peers in sister MPA and doctoral programmes.

Visit the Science, Engineering and Public Policy - MPA page on the University College London website for more details!

All Available Videos:

Student Profiles

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor’s degree from a UK university in a relevant discipline, or a 3.5 GPA, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Students are encouraged (but are not required) to have work experience prior to enrolling on this programme.

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