The STEaPP Master's Programmes

Our Master's in Public Administration programmes deliver a balance of taught courses from world-leading academics and practitioners and structured projects engaging real-world policy communities. 

In the 21st century science, technology and engineering are rewriting the foundations of our modern societies. Although this happens in different ways for different communities, everyone is affected: from urban citizens in the UK, China or Brazil (re-)developing their cities to make them more sustainable and prosperous; to rural farmers in Ghana, Nepal or India leveraging new communications tools to exchange knowledge that can make their communities safer and more resilient in the face of a changing climate.

Master's students at UCL STEaPP are encouraged to take an interdisciplinary approach to their studies. Regardless of their background, graduates will be provided with essential foundation of skills and insights necessary for future leaders to make informed and accountable public policy. Each student will be able to customise their studies based on their own interests and career goals and take electives courses from across UCL’s world-class faculties of Engineering Sciences, Mathematical & Physical Sciences, the Bartlett, UCL Faculty of the Built Environment, Laws, and Social & Historical Sciences.

Natural Scientists or Engineers will:

  • Develop the skills to leverage scientific and engineering knowledge and expertise within public decision-making processes surrounding the societal challenges they care about
  • Gain a greater awareness of current trends and ideas in public decision making, across all scales and sectors
  • Learn how to work effectively with policymakers, social scientists and industry experts
  • Develop a greater understanding of the knowledge systems underpinning successful policymaking processes

Policy Professionals or Social Scientists will:

  • Develop the skills to mobilise policy, natural science and engineering knowledge and expertise to address the societal challenges they care about
  • Gain a greater awareness of current issues and developments in science, technology and engineering
  • Learn how to communicate with scientists and engineers, policymakers and industry experts
  • Develop a greater awareness of the knowledge systems underpinning successful policymaking processes

Key Features of the Master's Programmes

Students have the option of two MPA programmes: Science and Public Policy (SPP) and Engineering and Public Policy(EPP). 

The two streams reflect the differences in the methods, practice and application of science and engineering and allow students to specialise according to their interests, background and career aspirations. The core courses of the SPP and EPP programmes are integrated, bringing a breadth of interdisciplinary backgrounds and experiences into the classroom.

However the two programmes are differentiated through:

  • Case work in the courses
  • The 10 month group projects with real-world policy client
  • Targeted skills training workshops

These modules will highlight the different applications of science and engineering to public policy and decision making and prepare students for professional practice within their chosen career track.

For students who are unsure - or discover that they wish to change their minds - about which preparation is best suited for their future professional careers, there will be opportunity to change streams during the first term of the programme. During this first term of the Master's course there is an in-depth introduction to the differences between the SPP and EPP programmes, and detailed discussion of the different professional environments students will be most equipped to practice in after graduating.

Regardless of which stream students choose, these two MPA programmes prepare graduates with the knowledge, skills and practical experience they need to (re-)design the local, national and international knowledge systems needed to bring our societies’ incredible social, scientific and engineering knowledge into the heart of accountable public decision making.

For further information, email

Page last modified on 12 mar 14 16:43