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Master in Public and Social Policies

Program curriculum and final degree

Program Curriculum

The Master in Public and Social Policy combines theoretical and practical elements in analysing the following content.

Taught modules: Basic theoretical concepts

  • Social structure: national and regional level.
  • Political structure: national and regional level.
  • Economic structure: national and regional level.
  • Social and public policies in OECD countries
  • Design and planning of public and social policies.
  • Evaluation of public and social policies.

Basic methodology

  • Statistical techniques for public and social policies.
  • National and international information systems.
  • Analysis and definition of need and vulnerability.
  • Qualitative techniques of analysis and evaluation of public and social policies.
  • Sources of statistical information.

Applied knowledge

  • Public administration.
  • Public finance: public budgets, public procurement and accounting.
  • Law and legal sociology.

Specialized knowledge

Social security policies

  • Pensions and other social transfers.
  • Unemployment insurance.
  • Widows and disability pensions.
  • Social security in Spain, Europe and Latin America.

Employment policies

  • Social impact of economic and employment policies.
  • Changes in global production and its impact on employment policies.
  • Labour policies: development, direct, indirect and social salary.
  • Analysis of active employment policies.

Employment market policies

  • International comparisons.
  • Social cohesion and competitiveness in the EU.
  • Labour market behaviour in Spain
  • Analysis of the labour market from the judicial and legal perspective

Policies concerning the environment and social space

  • Quality of the workplace, unemployment, social welfare and occupational health.
  • The environment: the relationship between physical and social space.
  • The city and quality of life.
  • Economic globalization and its impact on cities.
  • Housing policies

Healthcare and public health policies

  • Public health policies: healthcare reform in Spain.
  • Public health policies: healthcare reform in OECD countries.
  • Public health policies in Spain.
  • Public health policies in Europe.
  • Public health policies in OECD countries.
  • Primary healthcare.

Education Policies

  • Education policies in Spain and Europe.
  • Primary, secondary and university education.
  • Theories of human capital.

Policies to promote women and family services

  • Economic, social and political dimensions of discrimination against women.
  • Corrective policies for discrimination against women: a comparative analysis.
  • Family assistance policies.

Policies concerning care for senior citizens and dependence

  • Social services for senior citizens and dependence.
  • Health services for senior citizens and dependence.
  • Quality of life for senior citizens.

Policies for preventing social exclusion

  • Poverty and marginalization.
  • Immigration.
  • Policies for correcting social inequality: comparative international analysis.

Social and community services policies

  • Volunteering and non-profit organizations and social welfare.
  • European policies on social and community services.

Social impact of economic policies

  • The social dimension of European integration.
  • Macroeconomic policies and their social impact.

These areas will be covered non-sequentially and will appear in different subjects.

Academic Practical exercises and internships

This master encourages active student participation in the education process. For this reason an internship is a compulsory part of the course. This internship can be in an organ of public administration (at a local, autonomous or state level), a private institution or a non-governmental organisation, under the direction and supervision of a tutor in the host centre and the coordinator of the master.

Students who have done an internship previously can substitute this part of the course with a theoretical assignment under the supervision of a tutor.

Final report

Once the taught component of the master and the internship are completed, the student will produce a final report analysing a social problem of his or her choosing and proposals for its solution.

Complimentary seminars (optional)

Complimentary seminars on different aspects of public policy and the welfare state will be offered throughout the academic year. These are designed to supplement the compulsory classes. They are short courses, lasting from 3 to 9 hours, and will be optional and not-assessed.

To see the syllabus of the master click here (spanish).


* The information contained herein may be subject to changes.

Final Degree

Upon successfully completing the program, students will receive a Master's Degree in Public and Social Policy, awarded by Pompeu Fabra University. Students will receive a certificate issued by the collaborating institutions; Johns Hopkins University and UPF Barcelona School of Management.

favourable accreditation