Programme, master’s level
120 credits
Malmö | daytime | 100%
28 August, 2023 - 8 June, 2025
Full tuition fee: 220000 SEK
Applications open 17 October

About the education

This master’s programme focuses on economic and business perspectives of urban development. Urban development is driven by private and public stakeholders at local, regional, national and international levels, and the programme provides you with understanding of the different stakeholders in developing and managing attractive and sustainable cities.

The programme develops your knowledge and understanding of the different incentives and institutions driving the development of sustainable cities. After graduation, you will be able to work in a range of positions within both private and public sectors. Graduates are also eligible for PhD studies.

Rapid urban development poses both possibilities and challenges worldwide. Urban development is driven by a variety of stakeholders and interests, such as the real estate and transport sectors, as well as public and non-governmental organisations. The programme addresses the role and interaction of different stakeholders as well as institutional perspectives on the development of sustainable and livable cities. The education is interdisciplinary with a basis in economics, business administration, real estate management, and economic geography. You will also get a broad training in both quantitative and qualitative methods suitable for analysing urban development.

The programme is part of the research environment at the Department of Urban Studies working with urban business and development. All the teachers in the programme are active researchers. Education and research conducted within the programme has a focus on applied sciences and is highly relevant for actors outside academia, involving public and private sectors. The department and its researchers collaborate closely with stakeholders in the transport and real estate sectors and with local and regional policymakers.

The first semester provides the students with an understanding of the numerous actors in cities continuously interacting to create value out of scarce resources. You will identify and understand stakeholders’ interests and analyse what drives and limits their actions. You will also learn about strategic work and service innovations. During the first semester, you will also improve your understanding and application of qualitative methods used in research, as well as your academic writing.

During the second semester, the focus shifts to more aggregate patterns and current issues of urban development. Using theoretical perspectives from economics and geography, you will analyse urban development with the help of statistical and GIS software. 

During the third semester, you can choose between studying abroad at one of the University’s 250 partner universities, taking freestanding courses at Malmö University or joining courses in our other master programmes at the Department of Urban Studies. You can also choose to apply for a research internship and learn how to conduct research by participating in one of the department’s research projects. The second year is completed with a master's thesis (30 credits).

The city is not a static physical entity but a dynamic organism that is in constant flux. Most people will live in a city during their life. Cities are often described as engines of growth, but they face challenges such as carbon dioxide emissions, exclusion, segregation, and de-populated city centres, and there is an urgent need to make our cities more sustainable. To achieve goals of sustainability, a wide range of different actors need to be involved, including the private sector. However, the inclusion of business actors and a business perspective in the field remains somewhat novel. Innovation and development cannot take place without collaboration between different actors. 

This master’s programme discusses the prospects and problems of cross-sector collaboration. Holistic perspectives are required to solve urgent challenges.

The programme is based on active learning, and students are expected to participate and come well-prepared.

The courses during the first two semesters employ different teaching methods, combining lectures, peer presentations, practical experiences, cases, academically supervised seminars, readings and group discussions. 

You will practice quantitative methods using statistical and GIS software. You will learn to apply methods on the theories you have discussed in class, which will build a good foundation for your future independent analysis and visualisation of quantitative data.

Your master thesis gives you the opportunity to specialise in a specific topic. Here you make use of the skills and knowledge you have acquired and developed during previous semesters, and learn to master the process of planning, structuring, and conducting research.

Urban development requires a broad knowledge of economic perspectives of societal challenges such as transport and property development, as well as deepened insights into innovative processes. These perspectives are important to understand the driving forces behind urbanisation, and to understand spatial development within and between cities and regions. After graduation, you will have a unique understanding of how such challenges affect cities and regions, making you qualified to work with these issues across sectors. Students will be of interest for the private sector in various consultancy firms or bigger construction companies, as well as in the public authorities at a local, regional and national level. The programme also provides a solid basis for PhD studies.

Courses within the programme

Entry requirements and selection

Here you can find the entry requirements, as well as how the available study places are distributed between applicants in the selection. For general admissions enquiries please contact the Admissions Office: admissions@mau.se

Entry requirements

Bachelor's degree, consisting of 180 credits. The equivalent of English 6 in Swedish secondary school.

Selection

Applicants are selected in rank order based on the submitted three-part supporting document.

Apply with supporting document

Please note that you are recommended to submit a supporting document with your application to this programme. If you fulfil the entry requirements but do not submit the supporting document, you can only be admitted if space allows. Please note that we only accept submissions that use the document below.

To complete your application with the supporting document, follow the steps below:

  • Create an account and apply to the programme via universityadmissions.se/antagning.se.
  • Upload your documentation as a pdf on universityadmissions.se/antagning.se or send the document by post. You will need to demonstrate both a bachelor's degree and English proficiency to be considered eligible for the programme. Applicants in their final year, who will receive their diploma before the programme starts, can also apply but must follow specific instructions.
  • The supporting document must be uploaded to universityadmissions.se/antagning.se by the deadline. 
  • For students applying in the first application round (international admission round, 17 October – 16 January), the supporting document must be uploaded to universityadmissions.se by 1 February. 
  • For students applying in the second admission round, (national admission round, 15 March – 17 April), the supporting document must be uploaded to antagning.se/universityadmissions.se by 17 April. 

Supporting documents can be found here during the application period. 

Note!
Please note that supporting documents submitted after this date will not be accepted. 

Assessment matrix for the supporting document

Prior knowledge and capability to perform in the programme

Part 1: Previous experiences

Education and work experiences that have provided insights into opportunities and challenges in urban business and development.

  • Not applicable (0p): Not assessable/ unclear, the applicant lacks education and experiences of relevance for urban business and development.
  • To a minor extent (1p): The applicant’s previous education and experiences show some knowledge of relevance for urban business and development.
  • To a high extent (2p): The applicant’s previous education and experiences show knowledge of high relevance for urban business and development.
  • To a very high extent (3p): The applicant’s previous education and experiences show knowledge of very high relevance for urban business and development.

Part 2: Independent project work

Relevance in relation to the programme, and ability to analyse and reflect in relation to the programme.

  • Not applicable (0p): Not assessable/ unclear, the independent project work lacks relevance for urban business and development.
  • To a minor extent (1p): In the independent project work (problem, purpose and theoretical approach), the applicant shows some knowledge of urban business and development.
  • To a high extent (2p): In the independent project work (problem, purpose and theoretical approach), the applicant shows good knowledge of and good ability to analyse and reflect on urban business and development.
  • To a very high extent (3p): In the independent project work (problem, purpose and theoretical approach), the applicant shows very good knowledge of and good ability to analyse and reflect on urban business and development.

Part 3: Letter of intent

Dedication and interest in the field of the programme, ability to write, structure arguments, and capability to perform in the programme.

  • Not applicable (0p): Not assessable/ unclear, motivation not provided.
  • To a minor extent (1p): The applicant presents how the programme can contribute to his/her future work/research career in urban business and development. The writing show that the applicant can communicate on a sufficient level for advanced studies.
  • To a high extent (2p): The applicant writes in an articulated, dedicated and reflective way how the programme can contribute to his/her future work/research career in urban business and development. The letter of intent displays proficient language skills.
  • To a very high extent (3p): The applicant writes in a very articulated, dedicated and reflective way how the programme can contribute to his/her future work/research career in urban business and development. The letter of intent displays proficient language skills.

 

"I believe looking at the urban context can offer us sustainable solutions"

After completing her bachelor’s degree in social sciences, Cajsa worked as a project planner at Karlskrona Municipality. While being involved in an EU project on sustainable mobility, her interest in transport and urban context began to take shape. She decided to apply for the master’s programme...

"I believe looking at the urban context can offer us sustainable solutions"

After completing her bachelor’s degree in social sciences, Cajsa worked as a project planner at Karlskrona Municipality. While being involved in an EU project on sustainable mobility, her interest in transport and urban context began to take shape. She decided to apply for the master’s programme Urban Business and Development – Real Estate and Transport to deepen her knowledge of the topic and to learn the necessary skills to make city life more sustainable. She is now studying her second semester in the programme.

What will you learn in Urban Business and Development – Real Estate and Transport?
The programme introduces you to concepts and theories within business administration, urban economics and urban planning, and the methodology needed for writing a master’s thesis. It also equips you with skills in statistics, geographic information systems and innovation generation.

The programme is interdisciplinary and international, which enables you to gain new, different perspectives from your teachers and classmates. The international environment will improve your ability to cooperate with a wide range of people, which will benefit you in your future workplace.

During the third semester, you get the opportunity to focus on your own area of interest. For my third semester, I want to go on exchange to South Korea to study courses such as climate change and urban development, which relates to my studies. 

Which parts of the programme have you enjoyed so far?
As my background is in social sciences, I’ve enjoyed learning more about organisational structures, institutions and stakeholders in an urban context. It’s also been fun to challenge my preconceptions and learn more about economics, strategic management and innovation.

Where do you see yourself in the future?
I hope to, in some way, help our society address the climate challenges we are facing; I believe looking at the urban context can offer us sustainable solutions. It doesn’t really matter whether I’ll work in the public or private sphere. I could also see myself getting a Ph.D. at some point, as I enjoy the academic life and would like to contribute to urban research.

"Where we live and work are important aspects in our lives"

After working in retail for nine years, Daniel had his goals set in the real estate industry. He completed his bachelor’s degree in Real Estate Business and Science at Malmö University and wanted to deepen his knowledge in real estate from an urban perspective; so he decided to embark on the...

"Where we live and work are important aspects in our lives"

After working in retail for nine years, Daniel had his goals set in the real estate industry. He completed his bachelor’s degree in Real Estate Business and Science at Malmö University and wanted to deepen his knowledge in real estate from an urban perspective; so he decided to embark on the master’s programme Urban Business and Development – Real Estate and Transport.

What will you learn in the programme?

You will learn about urban economics and how cities evolve through economic, environmental and technological development. Those three aspects are the cornerstones permeating the programme. The programme offers a wide range of education and is internationally relevant, no matter your background. I’ve learned a lot from the interactive lectures, workshops, group projects and examinations. My studies have enhanced my ability to take a leadership role in a professional setting and work with people from diverse backgrounds.

The third semester is elective, which means that you get the possibility to specialize within certain fields of interest. Personally, I'll be applying for the exchange in Paris with a focus on real estate science and development, as it aligns with my previous studies and future goals.

Which parts of the programme have you enjoyed so far?

I enjoyed our latest course on strategy. It had an interactive workshop where we, together with a real estate company, worked with a case using design thinking and problem-solving. We got to work in a larger team and to experience what working with a project can look like in a professional setting.

What’s the programme environment like?

We have formed a great community between us classmates. Because it’s an international programme, we are such a diverse crowd, and we get to learn about different backgrounds and cultures, which is fun and refreshing. The teachers are transparent with what they expect from us students during courses, and they are very accommodating. When questions arise, they are happy to answer, and they try to be as interactive as possible.

What is your dream job?

I have always found the real estate industry interesting. My dream job is to work in real estate development and construction, managing and creating safe environments for homes and workplaces. Where we live and work are important aspects in our lives, and I would like to offer people improvements in these aspects.

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