Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy


mit Zugangsbeschränkung

Letztes Update: 24.05.2019
Bereich: Volkswirtschaftslehre 20, Soziologie und Kulturwissenschaften 75
Umfang 4 Semester / 120 ECTS
Studienplätze: 60 / Jahr
Abschluss: Master of Science (MSc)
Kosten: prinzipiell keine Studiengebühr

Über das Studium:

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.

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.

4 CONCENTRATION AREAS - specialize in your areas of interest

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

66 % INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS - an international classroom at “home”

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.


Diesen Fächern begegnest du u.a. im Studienplan:

Actors, Advanced Research methods, Contemporary Global Policy Challenges, Environmental Change and Policy, Globalisation and Multi-level Policy, Growth/ wellbeing and development, International institutions/ governance and policy evaluation, Methodology for interdisciplinary research, Quantitative and Qualitative Methods, behaviors and decision processes


The Master Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy is a full-time program which takes 4 semesters. Over the course of studies students acquire theory-based knowledge, methodological skills as well as the ability to apply these in an interdisciplinary context.


Graduates of the MSc (Master of Science) program Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy have the ideal qualifications for a career as socio-economists in the field of sustainability. The successful completion of the program endowed them with skills to

  • gain a comprehensive understanding of issues in the field of socio-ecological transition and ensuing challenges for politics, and to analyze these issues using appropriate models and quantitative and qualitative methods

  • obtain relevant information from specialist academic and practical literature and socioeconomic information systems and apply them in a critical but considered manner

  • support political and management processes through appropriate designs and skills even in conflictladen situations

  • work constructively in teams and participate actively in interactive problem-solving processes

The SEEP graduate is (I) equipped with the theories, methods and empirical approaches necessary for an in-depth understanding of global social, economic and environmental policy issues, (II) aware of the variety of ethical issues arising from sustainable development, (III) possesses the skills essential for interdisciplinary analysis, and (IV) is able to work in international teams in developing, designing and evaluating novel policy responses.

Berufsaussichten / Jobs:

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


Open to a select group of students from all over the world, this program combines academic excellence with practical and political relevance. The program is aimed at students with a diverse array of backgrounds, who have a deep concern for the challenges arising from rapid environmental change, population dynamics, poverty, and exclusion, and are keen to find ways to enhance environmental sustainability and human well-being.

Admission Requirements

In order to apply for the MSc in Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy you must fulfill the minimum requirements for application and prove your aptitude for the program. Should any of the required proofs of aptitude be missing, your application will be rejected.

Minimum requirements for application

1. Relevant Bachelor's program:

Completion of or enrollment in a relevant Bachelor's program or other equivalent degree program at a recognized Austrian or foreign post-secondary institution. To be considered relevant, the completed program has to meet the following criteria:

  • Relevant Bachelor's program or other equivalent degree program (worth at least 180 ECTS credits). The Bachelor’s Program in Business, Economics, and Social Sciences at Vienna University of Economics and Business is considered relevant.    

  • If you apply with an equivalent degree program, examinations have to be documented in the following subjects

    • Economics, worth a minimum of 16 ECTS credits OR

    • Social sciences, worth a minimum of 16 ECTS credits OR

    • Mathematics / statistics / quantitative methods, worth a minimum of 16 ECTS credits

Please note: It is not necessary to have completed this program at the time of application as proof of completion of your first-degree program is not required until actual enrollment. Nevertheless, the minimum requirements listed above must be documented within the uploaded documents.

2. Proof of sufficient proficiency in English:

The proof of sufficient English proficiency has to be submitted at the time of application. If the proof of suffiecient proficiency is not uploaded in the online tool, your application will be rejected.  The following are acceptable proofs:

  • English as native language

  • Full Bachelor's program done in English (at least three years, university confirmation required)

  • Full Master's program done in English (at least two years, university confirmation required)

  • One of the following certificates: valid TOEFL 100, valid IELTS 7.0, valid TOEIC 800, Cambridge English: CAE, CPE or BEC Higher, UNIcert III

  • A certificate from a university language department confirming the applicant has achieved level C1 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages

  • Graduates of WU’s Bachelor´s program in Business Law and Bachelor´s program in Business, Economics and Social Sciences already fulfill this requirement.

3. Proof of aptitude (Selection criteria):

In addition to the minimum requirements, you need to prove your aptitude for the Master's program. All documents must be submitted at the time of application.

  1. Proof of aptitude: two letters of recommendation

  2. Communication skills, interpersonal competencies, international orientation (these skills will be tested within the interview)

  3. Curriculum vitae in English

  4. Statement of motivation in English

  5. Two relevant academic essays or other writing samples in English

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