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Master's Program in Urban Studies and Planning in Real Estate Economics

Aalto University
2 years
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available
On campus
Aalto University

Program description

Master's Program in Urban Studies and Planning in Real Estate Economics

Urbanization is a global force that will determine the future of societies, as most of society's key challenges are met in cities. Cities provide enormous economic, technical and cultural opportunities, but are also stages for social conflict and segregation, as well as environmental and health problems. No discipline or profession can tackle challenges of this magnitude alone - urban development requires collaboration.

Two prominent Finnish universities, Aalto University and University of Helsinki, have joined forces in this unique and interdisciplinary master’s program. Aalto University admits students to the program through three channels: for Programs of Master of Science (Architecture), Master of Science (Landscape Architecture) and Master of Science (Technology) for the real estate specialization. The real estate specialization is oriented towards applicants with a Bachelor’s degree in planning, urban economics, real estate or economics.

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Admission requirements

Aalto University's student selection process is competitive and paper-based. Applications that pass the eligibility check (administrative evaluation) conducted by Aalto University Admissions Services proceed to the school's Program-specific academic evaluation. The Program is planned for full-time studies and preference is given to applicants who are committed to this.

The following are used as criteria for academic evaluation:

  • University/higher education institution; recognized for high quality of education and research
  • Degree and relevance of studies; suit very well or excellent to the study option
  • Academic performance; need to be mainly very good or excellent
  • Motivation and commitment to the Program; should be clearly in connection with the study option

To ensure that the students have sufficient skills and knowledge for the Master’s studies, a miminum requirement in student selection is that earlier studies (either bachelor's degree or other studies) include at least basics of economics. Priority will be given to students whose prior studies include courses in real estate, urban studies or urban geography. If completed individual courses or studies on these topics that are not included in the degree that is used as grounds for the application, the certificates should be attached on these studies in the application.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

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Program content

The Master's Degree in Urban Studies and Planning prepares students to excel as professionals capable of understanding and addressing complex urban development challenges. Students learn to address such challenges through a curriculum and pedagogical approach that includes interdisciplinary breadth as well as depth in core areas of knowledge, skill and practice. The Program balances theoretical and conceptual knowledge with the acquisition of methods, skills and experiences. Thus, students gain a broad understanding of urban phenomena as well as practical experiences in collaborative and concrete situations. This is the basis both of structure of the Program and of elements in the curriculum.

The program takes full advantage of the joint university structure by connecting leading expertise from the University of Helsinki and Aalto University. The signature element of the Program is studio courses, which cross different fields of expertise to address urban challenge themes. These themes relate to current and urgent contemporary issues found not only in Finland but in Europe and all around the world, including some conflicts within urbanization itself. Urban challenge themes may be attached to focus areas, research projects or collaborations within our universities, municipalities and regions in order to provide a constructive and critical framework for study and practice. Urban challenge themes are transdisciplinary and trans-professional, uniting the core areas as joint effort towards a common challenge and emphasizing an outward and forward-looking perspective.

Studies in the real estate specialization provide students with skills for analyzing the real estate markets and understanding the dynamic processes that determine supply, demand and prices. Students learn the basic methods used in the valuation of real estate and gain insight into the business logics of various actors. The specialization provides a professional capabilities relevant to real estate related position in both private and public sector.

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.

Tuition fees

For non-EU/EEA citizens: €15000/year


Upon completion of the program, students will graduate with a Master of Science (Technology) degree. 

Career opportunities

The program prepares you to be a professional in a field that is meaningful, growing and in demand. You will acquire the knowledge, skills and experience needed to fill both traditional and emerging roles in real estate markets (such as real estate development, real estate investment, strategic planning, policy and service design). To these established or emerging roles, you will bring an integrated understanding of, and training in applying, more interdisciplinary and collaborative approaches to urban development. As a graduate you will be prepared to compete for local and international positions within public, private and non-profit organisations, firms, research institutions and NGOs.

About this institute

Aalto University

Aalto University is a multidisciplinary community of bold thinkers, where science and art meet technology and business. We are committed to identifying and solving grand societal challenges and building an innovative future....

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Contact info

Aalto University

Otakaari 1B
02150 Espoo

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