M.Sc. Sustainable Urban Technologies

The Role of Technology in the Master Programme Sustainable Urban Technologies Technology in the Context of Sustainable Urban Systems

In times of growing dependencies and dynamic development processes between technology and society, the city has become the main stage and breeding ground for new technological trends. Within the concept of a technology-led urban environment, a Smart City, smart systems permeate every domain of urban life in order to exchange information between public services and smart citizens. The data exchange between big servers and the Internet of Things might secure a high level of convenience and safety within city life but also involves risks for individuals and societies. Therefore, the urban transition process needs experts who not only contribute to developing new technologies but also anticipate alterations and collapses of as hitherto established system boundaries and combat the use of technology for illicit purposes.

The master programme Sustainable Urban Technologies aims precisely at educating these experts: The students gain the ability to investigate and design the shift from Social-Ecological Systems to Social-Ecological-Technological Systems from an interdisciplinary perspective and learn to cope with new challenges that arise within technology-driven societies.

In lectures, seminars and excursions, economic, environmental and cultural forces that shape and are shaped by technology are discussed side by side with real-world rural-urban developments such as changes in Global Food-Supply, Migration, Urban Structure or Smart Cities. Students are expected to deal critically with well-established scientific theories and beliefs. Thereby, new concepts of, for instance, the Green Economy, the Ecosystem Services Approach, System Resilience, De-growth or approaches for interactive value-added-processes will be analyzed critically and linked closely to present urbanisation processes and their social impact.

Modular Structure

In the Master's programme "Sustainable Urban Technologies", seven courses (5 ECTS credits each) from the fields of urban planning, engineering and the natural sciences provide training (among other areas) in sustainable urban planning, logistics, energy systems, technology management,  urban ecology, urban climatology and energy economics. In these fields, students are offered a broad range of courses to choose from; they are individually coached in making these choices based on their previous qualifications, their professional goals and development perspectives.

These courses are complemented by additional integrative modules studied together with students from the complementary Master's programme "Urban Culture, Society and Space", namely the foundational module (15 ECTS credits) in the first semester and the joint research training project in the second semester (10 ECTS credits). Moreover, in their third semester students complete an individual internship of at least three monthts in a company, an international organization, a municipal body or another institution centrally involved in urban management or urban research (20 ECTS credits).

Finally, in the course of the programme students complete two modules (5 ECTS credits each) from the complementary field of studies in "Urban Culture, Society and Space", for instance in the fields of urban geography, urban sociology and urban history, urban cultural studies, or urban cultural management.

The overarching aim - notwithstanding the need for interdisciplinary qualifications - is an in-depth education in a specific disciplinary culture, which allows students to make productive contributions in demanding work environments. The topics for the Master's thesis to be written in the fourth and final term (30 credits including the oral thesis defence) are also agreed upon individually depending on students' specific qualifications, experience and professional development goals. In a programme generally aiming at a broad interdisciplinary education rooted in disciplinary competencies, a broad range of courses to choose from allows students to develop their own unique profile in the course of their studies by focusing on specific areas of competence.

The Modular Construction of the Master’s Programme “Urban Culture, Society and Space”:

Modulaufbau SUT

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Master's Degree

The standard duration of study is four semesters and students will finish the Master's Programme “Sustainable Urban Technologies” with a Master of Science (M.Sc.)

Language of Instruction

The language of instruction in the Master's Programme "Sustainable Urban Technologies” is English. Because some courses are offered in German, German skills increase the range of electives available.