Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics (MSc)

For more information about Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics at University of Helsinki, please visit the webpage using the button above.

The award
MSc

How long you will study
2 years

Domestic course fees
find out

How you will study
full-time

Course starts
September

International course fees
EUR 15000 per year

All study options

About Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics at University of Helsinki

Goal of the programme

Are you looking forward to a future as an expert in Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics? As a graduate of our Master's Programme in Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics, you can find employment in the national or international market, for example at universities, research institutes, the public sector or in business, or you can become a self-employed entrepreneur.

The Viikki Campus offers optimal resources for studying the unique range of subjects offered by our programme. Upon graduating you will be a professional in applied economics in agricultural, environmental and resource-focused fields. You will be well versed in topics such as climate policy, sustainable agriculture and food security.

The Master's programme comprises two study tracks:

1. Agricultural economics

  • Languages of instruction: Finnish, Swedish, English

2. Environmental and resource economics

  • Language of instruction: English

As a graduate you will be able to:

  • Support decision-making in the public and private sectors in various roles as a consultant, researcher or public servant  
  • Analyse and communicate the impact of policies on fields relating to agriculture, the environment and natural resources
  • Apply economic theories and quantitative methodologies, such as econometrics and numerical modelling, to issues in the field

As a graduate of the studytrack in Environmental and Resource economics you will have the ability to

  • Identify the socio-economic drivers of natural resource use and environmental degradation
  • Analyse the effects of policies on the environment and on natural resource usage
  • Formulate recommendations to support decision-making in both the public and private sectors 
  • Apply microeconomic theory and quantitative methods (econometrics, analytical and numerical dynamic modelling, game theory)

Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.

Tuition fees

Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area and pursue their studies in English, are liable to pay tuition fees. You can check from FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees.

Find out more about the Be 1* of the Best Scholarship Programme.

Information on the languages of instruction

The study track in environmental and resource economics is taught only in English. The study track in agricultural economics is taught in English, Finnish and Swedish. It is also possible to complete courses, write the Master's thesis and get supervision in Finnish or Swedish. It is also possible to complete courses, write the Master's thesis and get supervision in Finnish or Swedish. At the beginning of the programme, you select the language of studies and demonstrate your competence in it.

Programme contents

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

After completing the study track in agricultural economics you will be able:

  • To apply the concepts and central theories of agricultural economics.
  • To apply perspectives of economic, ecological and social sustainability.
  • To analyse and develop the business operations of agricultural and rural enterprises as well as intensify production in a sustainable manner.
  • To analyse the operation of agricultural and food markets.
  • To analyse the international political steering of agriculture.

The study track of agricultural economics combines expertise in business administration and economics with knowledge of the special features of agriculture, rural enterprises, the food market and related policies.

Through studies in agricultural economics, you will learn to apply theories and models used to define the profitability and competiveness of agricultural and rural enterprises and the farm-level factors contributing to profitability and competiveness. You will examine the operation of the market and assess various policy options. The studies include practice-oriented assignments that build your decision-making and career skills, and your self-confidence to apply theoretical knowledge in practice.

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

In this studytrack you will receive a state-of-the-art economic education in environmental and natural resources policy. The courses are divided into three groups:

1. Theoretically focused courses in which you will gain a deep understanding of static and dynamic models and applications of game theory

2. Courses focusing on quantitative methods in which you will gain the ability to run numerical simulations and apply econometric methods

3. Thematic courses focusing on relevant challenges in environmental and resource policy.

Selection of the study track

Graduates of the Bachelor's Programme in Environmental and Food Economics can continue directly to the Master's Programme in Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics, provided that they specialised in agricultural, environmental and resource economics for their Bachelor's degree. In addition, graduates of the Bachelor's Programme in Agricultural Sciences can continue directly to the study track in agricultural economics, provided that they have completed the module in agricultural economics for their Bachelor's degree.

Applicants from other programmes and universities must have completed a sufficient amount of studies in economics, mathematics and statistics. Some of these studies may be incorporated into the Master's degree as optional studies. If there are more applicants than student places, admission will be based on your previous academic performance and the applicability of your Bachelor's degree.

Programme structure

The scope of the Master's level studies is 120 credits, including both field-specific advanced studies and optional studies in the field or from other degree programmes. The minimum scope of field-specific advanced studies is 60 credits, 30 of which are accounted for by the Master's thesis. You are recommended to focus on your Master's thesis during your second year of Master's studies.

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

The advanced studies comprise at least two modules of 15 credits. The modules are:

  • agricultural markets and policy
  • business economics
  • rural entrepreneurship
  • environmental and natural resources.  

In addition, your studies must include at least 15 credits of methodological studies. The studies encompass a practical training period and seminars, and they can include career orientation and career planning. You will also need to complete a personal study plan (PSP).

The scope of optional field-specific studies and studies offered by other degree programmes is 30-40 credits.

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

The studytrack lasts four semesters, lasting approximately 22 months (1st year beginning of August- 2nd year beginning of June).

1) Core modules (45 ECTS)

  • Environmental economics
  • Natural Resource Economics, dynamic optimisation and numerical models
  • Environmental valuation, applied econometrics and cost-benefit analysis

2) Thematic modules (30 ECTS)

  • Choose two of the following: climate change, of Baltic Sea protection, agricultural economics and agri-environmental policy, forest economics 

3) Internship and Master's thesis seminar 15 credits (ECTS)

4) Master's thesis 30 credits (ECTS)

Total 120 credits (ECTS)

Thesis

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

The Master's thesis project will enable you to apply and develop your theoretical and methodological skills. Your thesis supervisor will be the professor or a university lecturer in your study track, or another high-level expert in the field. You can write your thesis as part of a research project or in collaboration with a research institute or company. Besides examining the theoretical framework of the thesis, the project involves acquisition of the research material, analysis using appropriate research methods, and drawing conclusions. The length of the thesis will be about 50 pages. Drafting the research plan and the thesis itself, presenting the work in seminars and discussing it critically will develop your scientific thinking, argumentation and communication skills.

The Master's thesis will serve as a good reference for your future career, as you will have enhanced your field-specific expertise during the research and writing process. The thesis project will also develop your abilities in scientific thinking and project management.

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

You will complete your Master's thesis during the third and fourth semesters. For your thesis you research and analyse a significant topic on environmental and resource policy. You can write your thesis in connection with a larger research project, in collaboration with companies and public institutions, or independently.

Career prospects

According to the labour market surveys conducted by the Finnish Association of Academic Agronomists, graduates from the study track in agricultural economics have been successful in finding employment- often before graduation. The programme alumni have found positions in various organisations in the public and private sectors in Finland, and many have pursued international careers in Europe or further afield. This study programme provides you with wide-ranging skills for starting a business and for serving in various expert or managerial positions, even if the focus of studies is on applied agriculture. Consequently, possible job titles are numerous: specialist, teacher, entrepreneur, researcher, senior officer, product manager, head of finance, etc. If you are interested in developing your expertise further, you can pursue postgraduate studies in the doctoral programmes offered by the University of Helsinki or another university in Finland or abroad.

The Environmental and Resource Economics Master of Science offers promising career paths in government, research, consultancy, industry, NGOs and international organisations.

Internationalization

As a student in the programme, you will have opportunities for internships, visits and study exchanges with partner universities. Visiting foreign lecturers give intensive courses as part of the thematic modules. As a student you will also be able to join our international research networks.

Networking

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

In addition to other universities and institutions of higher education, the programme engages in cooperation with the Natural Resources Institute Finland (LUKE), Pellervo Economic Research, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Pellervo Cooperative Society, producers' organisations (including the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners and the Central Union of Swedish-speaking Agricultural Producers in Finland), banks, insurance institutions and various companies within the food sector. During your Master's studies, you can complete a practical training period in a company or government agency. The programme cooperates with agricultural universities in the Nordic countries, Estonia and other European countries, and has partners in North America, Africa and Asia.

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

Teaching and student exchange programmes with the following institutes:

  • Department of Economics, University of Kiel
  • Norwegian School of Economics, Bergen
  • Norwegian University of Life Sciences, As
  • University of Southern Denmark, Odense
  • University of Algarve, Faro

Research focus

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

  • Agricultural economics and entrepreneurship
  • Agricultural business economics
  • Agricultural, rural and food policy
  • Agricultural and food markets
  • Agriculture and food security in the developing world

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

Climate and energy, economic-ecological optimisation, Baltic Sea protection, forest economics, international fisheries agreements, biodiversity offsets, agri-environmental policy

Postgraduate studies

Studytrack: Agricultural economics

Upon successfully completing Master's level studies, you will have opportunities for postgraduate studies at universities in Finland or abroad. The target duration of doctoral studies in Finland is four years of full-time study. The study track in agricultural economics produces two or three doctoral degrees annually. All postgraduate students belong to a doctoral programme, for example the Doctoral Programme in Sustainable Use of Renewable Natural Resources. Doctoral programmes and the Nordic NOVA network organise courses for doctoral students. As a holder of a doctorate in agricultural economics you can find employment at universities and in research institutes and businesses.

Studytrack: Environmental and Resource Economics

As a graduate of this study track you will have excellent qualifications to enter PhD programmes in environmental and resource economics including the Agforee PhD programme at the University of Helsinki.

Study options for this course

  • The award How you will study How long you will study Course starts Domestic course fees International course fees
  • The awardMScHow you will studyFull-timeHow long you will study2 years
    Course startsSeptemberDomestic course fees find outInternational course feesEUR 15000 per year

Notes about fees for this course

Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area and pursue their studies in English, are liable to pay tuition fees. You can check from FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees.

Find out more about the Be 1* of the Best Scholarship Programme.

Entry requirements

Contact University of Helsinki to find course entry requirements.

What students think about University of Helsinki

    Flexible and chances to dive deep

    I was positively surprised by flexibility of studies (now I am working abroad and at the same time writing my thesis and participating in Helsinki Law Clinic) and number of courses aimed at developing teamwork. Also, master degree programmes last 2 years which was one of decisive factors for me as against one-year programmes. Two year period provide more chances to dive deep into studies!

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