MASTER OF PUBLIC POLICY

Curriculum & Courses

The degree requires the completion of 48 credit hours (most courses are three credit hours). All students admitted onto the MPP will be required to complete the program on a full-time basis, a minimum of 12 credits and up to a maximum of 15 credits of coursework per semester.


CORE COURSES (24 CREDITS)

The required core courses provide students with a grounding of the various perspectives, skills and tools that policy professionals must possess to develop and manage policies effectively.

  • Foundations in Public Policy

  • Microeconomics and Public Policy

  • Quantitative Analysis and Empirical Methods

  • Public Policy Analysis

  • Evidence in Public Policy

  • Public Management and Leadership

  • Policy Analysis Project


ELECTIVE COURSES (24 CREDITS)

Students expand analytical skills attained through the core courses with 24 credits of elective courses focusing on today’s most relevant policy areas and applied analytical methods. In addition to elective courses offered by the Division of Public Policy, MPP students are offered opportunities to broaden their perspectives through courses offered by HKUST Business School, the School of Engineering, the School of Humanities and Social Science, and the Division of Environment and Sustainability. The ability to offer access to a diverse range of electives across the university is a key strength of the HKUST MPP in comparison to programs elsewhere.


AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION (OPTIONAL)

As part of their 48 credits, MPP students have the option to specialize in one of the two following specializations: science, technology and innovation policy or environmental policy and sustainability. A specialization consists of at least four 3-credit courses, of which at least two are offered by the Division of Public Policy. Students pursuing this option must choose their elective coursework based on the requirements for their specialization.

Science, Technology and Innovation Policy. The specialization provides students with the opportunity to acquire knowledge and skills that are essential to professional careers in areas where science and technology are guided by public policy or where science and technology play an integral role in the formulation and implementation of innovative solutions.

Environmental Policy and Sustainability. This specialization provides students with the opportunity to acquire the tools, methodologies, interdisciplinary perspectives, and substantive topical knowledge necessary to be effective policy professionals in public, non-profit, and private organizations that cover a broad spectrum of issues relating to the environment and natural resources.


STRUCTURE OF THE PROGRAM

1st Term (12 credits) 2nd Term (12 credits)

Foundations in Public Policy
Microeconomics and Public Policy
Quantitative Analysis and Empirical
Methods
Elective

Public Policy Analysis
Evidence in Public Policy
Public Management and Leadership
Elective 2

3st Term (12 credits) 4nd Term (12 credits)

Policy Analysis Project (Part I)
Elective 3
Elective 4
Elective 5

Policy Analysis Project (Part II)
Elective 6
Elective 7
Elective 8


CLIENT-BASED POLICY ANALYSIS PROJECT

The Policy Analysis Project is the capstone module of our MPP program. It aims to provide students with a valuable, engaging, educational and professional experience. It is a year-long project for which students work in teams of four to six people on challenges, issues and problems facing real-world organizations. Students will have opportunities to apply the knowledge and skills that they have learnt from the MPP program to analyze policy issues, develop solutions and produce professional reports for the client organizations.


INTERNSHIPS

Students with little or no prior working experience are strongly encouraged to strengthen their career preparedness and broaden their placement opportunities by taking up an internship during the summer between the first and second- year of study. Typically structured as ten weeks of full-time work in government agencies, non-profit organizations and private sector entities, such internships help students clarify their career direction, assist them to gain practical and professional experience, and enable them to establish a professional network.