Organisation - October 6, 2016

TU Delft and WUR launch ‘urban Master’s’

Rob Ramaker

Wageningen University & Research and the Technical University of Delft want to launch a new Master’s programme in 2017. The programme in Metropolitan analysis, design and engineering addresses urban issues such as how to make cities climate-proof.

Photo:The master is taught at the Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen (KIT) in Amsterdam (credit)

The universities will submit their application for accreditation to the Dutch-Flemish Accreditation Organization (NVAO) mid-October. It should be clear within six months whether accreditation is granted, so the programme should start in September 2017.

There are no plans for a big student recruitment campaign in the coming year, says programme director Erik Heijmans. Information is available on the WUR website, though, with the disclaimer that accreditation is still pending. ‘We are already noticing that a lot of people are interested.’ Heijmans hopes the Master’s will start small with a cohort of around 20 students.

The ‘urban Master’s’ will be offered at the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions (AMS), which was set up jointly by Wageningen University & Research, the TU Delft and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2013. Students take core courses in the building of the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) in Amsterdam. For their electives and specialist courses they travel to Delft and Wageningen.

We are already noticing that a lot of people are interested.
programme director Erik Heijmans

More and more of the world’s population lives in – ever larger – cities. The AMS wants to make these cities more sustainable and pleasant to live in. According to the institute, this calls for an integral approach in which experts from a range of disciplines such as ecology, logistics, hydrology and data science collaborate. The AMS is interested in urban cycles, around the food supply, energy and traffic, for instance.

The new Master’s was announced right from the launch of AMS. Since then the idea has been scrutinized to see whether it is sufficiently distinctive, fits the participating institutions’ profiles, and meets a demand on the job market. One course module – Sustainable urban development  - was launched earlier this year as a free online course (a Massive Online Open Course or MOOC).

The new Master’s is Wageningen University & Research’s third joint programme. WUR is already offering a Master’s programme in Water Technology in Leeuwarden, jointly with the universities of Groningen and Twente. And the Bachelor’s in Tourism is run jointly with the NHTV university of applied sciences in Breda.