Sustainable Urban Development (M.Sc.)

Place of study

Campus Essen and Duisburg

Start of study

The programme starts in the winter semester only. An application for the winter semester 20/21 is not possible. 

Period of study

4 Semester

Preliminary note

An application for the winter semester 20/21 is not possible.  


The complexity of urban systems touches on spatial, geographical, artistic, functional, infrastructural, cultural and social dimensions and can only be grasped adequately by means of interdisciplinary approaches. It is necessary that social studies and cultural studies as well as natural and engineering sciences join urban research and practice for the purpose of interdisciplinary cooperation. Bearing in mind this need for interdisciplinary courses, the two closely-linked Master's Degree Programs ‘Urban Culture, Society, and Space’ (MA) and ‘Sustainable Urban Development’ (MSc) have been developed as part of the Joint Center ’Urban Systems’.

Course of study (+)

Course of study and modules

Please consult:


  • Eight participating faculties provide a wide selection of compulsory module options,

  • Networking of the teaching content is guaranteed by close links between the study programmes via integrative modules, which students from both fields complete together,

  • High practical orientation through a minimum of three months of work experiences (internship) (20 CP) at a regional, national, or international business, organisation, public authority or association.


  • A total of 9 modules each (incl. Master's Thesis), of which 2 integrativ modules (15 + 10 + 5 = 30 CP) and 2 interdisciplinary complimentary modules (5 + 5 = 10 CP), which the students absolve with the students of the other master's programme,

  • MSC Degree in the "Sustainable Urban Development" programme,

  • Final examination consisting of a Master's Thesis with a duration of six months.

More information on curriculum

Please consult:

Admission to study programme (+)

Admission requirements

Admission to the "Sustainable Urban Development" Master's programme requires a B.S. (Bachelor's Degree) in the natural sciences, engineering or planning sciences. The overall grade of the previous Bachelor's Degree in " Sustainable Urban Development" should be at least 2.3 or better.

A comparable degree can be accepted if the board of examiners determines that the degree is equivalent to a B.S. In any case, good English language skills (level C1) are required.


Applications can be submitted between May, 15th and July, 15th for admission to the upcoming winter semester (commencing studies in summer semester is not possible).

An application for the winter semester 20/21 is currently not possible. It is unclear whether this course of studies will be offered.

Qualifying examination

For further information please consult:

Special admission requirements

Applications are only possible (from EU) via the Joint Center of Urban Systeme (contact: Dr. Elke Hochmuth). For further information please consult:

 Applications for NON-EU applicants are only possible online. Please consult:

Examination board

Professors in Charge and Chairman of Examination Board: Prof. Dr. Jens Martin Gurr

Language requirements

Proof of your English skills according to level C1 of the Common European Framework (CEF) for languages.A TOEFL-test (internet based) with a score of 100 points, a UNIcert test of level 3 (III), a Cambridge Certificate in “Advanced English level C or an IELTS test with a band score of 7.5 qualify as sufficient proof. The board of examiners decides if other internationally accepted language certificates can be accepted (cf. sec. 1 of the examination regulations). If you are a native speaker or if you graduated at an English-speaking university, you do not have to provide proof of your language skills.

Internships during study

Insights into the professional world are a key component of the Master's programme. Therefore, the curriculum includes a project seminar in the second semester and an internship in the third semester. The internship should last at least three months and aims at the professional orientation of the students.

Study abroad period

Not obligatory

Professional work experiences (+)



Internship Period

The internship should last at least three months and aims at the professional orientation of the students.

Proof time

It is usually conducted after the 2nd and during the 3rd semester.

Students are required to submit an internship report of at least 5,250 words. The report is part of the work to be done and completes the internship.


Students get access to a list of internship employers.


The institution should work in an urban context and students should be involved in at least one urban project.


The examination board decides on the suitability of the institution. The internship report will be evaluated and graded. The grade of the internship report is indicated on the transcript of the student.

More Information

Please consult:


20 ECTS-Credits

Network and Careers (+) (+)

It is our expressed goal to enable students to work independently and creatively on complex and cross-disciplinary urban problems that are new to them, to identify, describe, analyse and evaluate such problems applying suitable methods; and to devise problem-solving strategies and communicate them properly. In short: We educate students to become internationally savvy, productive and communicative experts for complex urban development projects.

Key competences of the studies in engineering, urban planning and design

  • Design for a mid to large-scale urban development project,

  • Application of logistical coordination methods,

  • Logistics management methods,

  • Methods of waste management,

  • Moderation and mediation techniques (e.g., for urban planning processes),

  • Techniques for developing urban infrastructure and transport concepts.

The Master's degree programmes of the special research area ‚Urban Systems‘ qualify for a successful career and outstanding responsibility in complex projects ofurban development,urban managementand urban research.

Professional profile in engineering, urban planning and design:

  • Strategic city planning and development (including: zoning and master planning),

  • Assessing and modifying urban infrastructure and transport systems,

  • Developing and managing large-scale urban projects (e.g. converting old industrial sites for a variety of new uses, e-city development),

  • Consulting of urban projects and urban development ('urban consulting'),

  • Urban and metropolitan research.

General course guidance for prospective and current students (+)

Consulting at the Duisburg Campus

mo: 13:00 - 15:00 hours
di, do: 10:00 - 12:00 hours

Geibelstraße 41
SG 066/SG 067
47057 Duisburg
Fax: 0203/37-93660

Consulting at the Essen Campus

mo, mi: 14:00 - 16:00 hours
di, do: 10:00 - 12:00 hours

Universitätsstraße 2
T02 S00 L12
45141 Essen
Fax: 0201/183-4329

Directions to the ABZ:
Entrance via the Mensa-Foyer, before the stairs left into the next corridor, behind the big chess game to the waiting area of the ABZ.

Study information in our off-campus offices in Duisburg and Essen

If you would like to get information about one or several study programmes and do not require comprehensive counselling , you can also visit our off-campus offices in Duisburg or Essen. Please find opening hours and addresses on our contact information page contact page.

Contact to the faculty and advisory service (+)


Joint Center of Urban Systems, Faculty of Engineering

Advisory service of the faculty

For any questions you may have regarding the programme, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Dr. Elke Hochmuth
Academic co-ordinator for the Master's Degree Programmes ‘Sustainable Urban Development’ and ‘Urban Culture, Society and Space’
Universität Duisburg-Essen
Universitätsstraße 2
Building R12 S01 H08
D-45117 Essen
+ 49 201 183-2595

Programme-specific advisors (teaching staff)

For any questions you may have regarding the programme, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Dr. Elke Hochmuth
Academic co-ordinator for the Master's Degree Programmes ‘Sustainable Urban Development’ and ‘Urban Culture, Society and Space’
Universität Duisburg-Essen
Universitätsstraße 2
Building R12 S01 H08
D-45117 Essen
+ 49 201 183-2595

Departmental student representatives

Faculty of Engineering

Similar Study Programmes (+)

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