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Master of Science in Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy

Course Description

The Master Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy (SEEP) is an innovative, internationally unique program that equips participants with the necessary theoretical background and factual information about the interconnected dynamics of economic and social systems and the physical environment. The program also enables participants to use appropriate analytical tools to engage in decision processes and longer-term policy on multiple spatial levels.

Visit the website: https://www.wu.ac.at/en/programs/masters-programs/socio-ecological-economics-and-policy/overview/

Course detail

Rapid environmental change, population dynamics, poverty, and exclusion are interrelated processes that challenge human development. To tackle these complex issues, traditional disciplinary approaches to analysis and policy formulation are not sufficient. Instead, integrated and interdisciplinary approaches to studying the working of the human-environment system are needed. The Master Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy presents integrated approaches to development and human well-being that go beyond the usual polarization between socioeconomic development and environmental goals.


The program offers training in socioeconomic analysis and focuses on the interfaces between environmental, economic and social challenges. This interdisciplinary and internationally oriented approach is based on three major pillars: theory, methodology, and application. The theory courses include concepts from a variety of disciplines, chosen for their relevance to global challenges. The methodological courses offer an integrated introduction to qualitative and quantitative methods and thus illustrate how they are best combined in empirical analyses. Relevance for policy making and organizational practice is emphasized throughout the program.

Our main focus lies on providing a thorough internationalization at the home university by attracting a diverse set of students from all over the world. The “international classroom at home” thus created is meant to allow students to experience foreign (academic) cultures, languages (especially English), and an international renowed faculty without having to leave the campus.


The program offers four concentration areas of which you can choose two: Environment, Population, Multi-Level Policy and Social Policy.

- Semester 1 -

- Contemporary Global Policy Challenges
- Methodology for Interdisciplinary Research
- Growth, Well-Being, and Development
- International Institution, Governance, and Policy Evaluation
- Service Learning 1

- Semester 2 -

- Actors, Behaviors, and Decision Processes
- Qualitative and Quantitative Methods
- Service Learning 2

Concentration Area 1 and 2 – choice of two:

- Environment
- Population
- Multi-Level Policy
- Social Policy

- Semester 3 -

- Qualitative and Quantitative Methods 2

Concentration Area 1 and 2 – continuing the chosen two areas from 2nd semester:

- Environment
- Population
- Multi-Level Policy
- Social Policy

- Semester 4 -

- Research Seminar
- Master Thesis

Career Prospects

The program has been designed to provide students with the necessary understanding of global sustainability issues, an ability to work in interdisciplinary teams, and sound training in socio-economic concepts and methods.

The MSc program prepares graduates for:

- Employment as policy analysts, program managers, consultants, civil servants, project managers, and advisors who provide an insight into and support decision processes relating to sustainability issues by, for example, undertaking risk and uncertainty analyses in the social and environmental sectors; analyzing long-term developments relating to climate change, population development or aging in society; undertaking sustainability appraisals at company, regional or policy levels; helping design social, environmental, economic or educational policies; designing and facilitating participatory processes

- Working in international organizations, consultancies, companies, ministries, national and international NGOs, and research institutes where interdisciplinary skills and knowledge about the interactions of sustainability issues are needed

- Doctoral studies in the social sciences, in particular in economics, social policy, environmental studies and demography

How to apply: https://www.wu.ac.at/en/programs/masters-programs/socio-ecological-economics-and-policy/application-admission/


Information on funding and scholarships can be found at the following webpage: https://www.wu.ac.at/en/students/my-degree-program/masters-student-guide/grants-and-scholarships/

Visit the Master of Science in Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy page on the WU – Vienna University of Economics and Business website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Completed Bacherlor's Degree, English language proficiency (e.g. TOEFL 600/250/100 or valid IELTS 7.0) and online application WU employs a rolling admission policy, allowing students to apply from the beginning of September until spring.

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Recipient: WU – Vienna University of Economics and Business
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