Master of Urbanism and Strategic Planning
Master of Science
EducationThe Master of Science in Urbanism and Strategic Planning (MaUSP) is a four-semester academic degree offered by the Department of Architecture, Urbanism and Planning (ASRO), first organised in 2005-2006. As an internationally oriented programme developing a critical understanding of contemporary conditions of cities and urban regions, it aims to cultivate innovative concepts and strategies for qualitative interventions in urban territories through design, planning, and policies. It prepares students for leadership roles in urban design, urban development and management, and strategic planning, with a special focus on European-wide urban problems. The programme interacts with research conducted by the research groups active in the ASRO Department.
The MaUSP programme is part of the European Postgraduate Masters in Urbanism (EMU), and students can apply to attend one or two semesters abroad at one of the partner universities - UPC Barcelona, TU Delft, or IUAV Venezia - to obtain the additional European Postgraduate Master of Urbanism. Applications to the EMU are subject to approval by the EMU Board.
The joint EMU programme is a collaborative effort bringing together the best components of existing curricula, creating new courses and offering a top-ranking professional degree by combining the specificity and strengths of the participating universities. The consortium functions as a platform for promoting an exchange of knowledge, ideas, and research projects on current urban trends in Europe and the world.
The Master of Science in Urbanism and Strategic Planning is an advanced Master's programme. You can follow this programme on a full-time or part-time basis.
ProfileThe ideal prospective student has a firm foundational knowledge of architecture and planning, exceptional results from previous studies, and a special desire to address European-wide urban problems. Practical experience in design offices, consultancy firms, planning or policymaking councils is beneficial. Proven, extensive and highly regarded personal experience can compensate for deficiencies in academic qualification.
For specific admission requirements, click on the desired programme in the 'Choose your courses of study' section.
ObjectivesThe aim of the programme is to deliver graduates who are able to work in a critical and independent way in the discipline. They should be able to create workable spaces which structurally influence the complex developments in the field of urban and regional planning.
By the end of the programme the student will have acquired:
- knowledge of diverse contexts of urbanization, in Europe and the world;
- knowledge of working at various levels of scale, with an ability to explain the interference between these levels of scale;
- design methods that are supported by a thorough analysis of the spatial phenomena dominating contemporary urbanization, and an understanding of the social forces underlying these phenomena;
- the ability to intervene in a strategic project which is politically and economically feasible, and which exercises a structuring effect that transcends its direct impact;
- skill in designing spatial interventions and strategies;
- skill in achieving a critical view of society's spatial functioning;
- sound communicative skills;
- the knowledge and skills required to participate in scholarly research .
After graduationAfter successfully completing the programme, you will have acquired a thorough knowledge of urbanisation in different contexts. You will have learned to work on various scale levels, with an understanding of the interferences between scales. You will be able to conduct a critical analysis of spatial phenomena in relation to the social and economic forces driving them. Building upon such analysis, you can design strategic interventions that are politically and economically feasible, and that have a structural impact. You will have developed excellent communication skills, visually as well as textually, and you will be able to function in a research environment.
Graduates will be able to provide professional architectural and/or urban design experience to design offices, consultancy firms, or work as public servants. Urbanism is closely related to current and rapid social transformation and there is a continual need for professionals capable of elaborating new interpretations, strategies and designs in response to emerging trends. MaUSP graduates are highly valued in urban design offices, consultancy firms for urban development and management, real estate agencies that develop public-private partnerships and the public sector.
Information sessionsKU Leuven organises a Verderstudeerbeurs each spring. In addition, faculties also organise information sessions for many of their bridging and graduate programmes.
All information sessions for (future) Master's students
Guest lectures and seminars form an important part of the programme. Most are compulsory. The programme benefits from the department's worldwide contacts in the field of human settlements and urbanism. Professionals involved in teaching, design, and consultancy activities from different corners of the world reflect the international character of the MaUSP curriculum.
Study trips to various destinations are organised throughout the academic year. You will be able to see and experience the area studied and will have the unique opportunity to link your theoretical knowledge to daily practice and fieldwork. The trips include visits to sites, lectures by local experts, as well as a range of assignments. Recent study trips in Europe have been made to France, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany and London (UK). Furthermore, one-day visits within Belgium are organised to support courses and provide an understanding of local current trends in urban transformations.
As a key feature of the programme, a study trip and studio-related fieldwork sessions are offered in a non-Western context. You will be given the opportunity to travel to the non-European studio context for fieldwork and visits to best practices sites and other relevant sites for about two weeks.
EMU design workshops
Annual design workshops are a compulsory and crucial activity offered by K.U.Leuven and the other three partner universities (IUAV Venice, UPC Barcelona, and TU Delft). This weeklong exchange of ideas and exposure to four different schools' approaches intensifies and broadens the programme's purpose. To date, students have had the opportunity to undertake design investigations in Conegliano (Italy), in the area of "Prà dei Gai", and the area around Venice.
ContactFaculty of Engineering Science
Prof dr. Ir. B. De Meulder
tel. + 32 16 32 13 91
fax + 32 16 32 19 81
Kasteelpark Arenberg 1 bus 2200
tel. + 32 16 32 13 50
fax + 32 16 32 19 82
Study Advice Service
Naamsestraat 80 box 5415
3000 LEUVEN, Belgium
To contact us please complete the contact form on our website.