Studying

Are you looking forward to a future as an expert in Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics? 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:

  • Agricultural Economics
  • Environmental and Resource Economics.

The scope of the studies is 120 ECTS 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 (in both study tracks) 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.  The field-specific advanced studies are listed in tables below according to study track.

 

Environmental and Resource Economics

In this study track you will receive a state-of-the-art economic education in environmental and natural resource economics. The courses, which are all taught in English, include theoretically focused courses in which you will gain a deep understanding of static and dynamic models and applications of game theory, courses focusing on quantitative methods in which you will gain the ability to run numerical simulations and apply econometric methods, and thematic courses focusing on relevant challenges in environmental and resource policy. Courses are taught by experienced teachers and active researchers, and course contents are built on the most recent research findings.

Most of the courses are divided into modules. The core modules are Environmental Economics, Natural Resource Economics and Methods. In addition to these modules you will study at least one thematic module such as Climate Studies and Baltic Sea Studies with the purpose of applying the learned theory and methods to real-world problems. You have also freedom to choose optional studies. For instance, your professional skills and networks will develop further through the optional Project Course or during your possible internship either in Finland or abroad.

For your Master's Thesis you research and analyse a significant topic on environmental and resource economics, which can be either policy or theory orientated. You can write your thesis in connection with a larger research project, in collaboration with companies and public institutions, or independently.

In your studies you have the opportunity to follow our Research Track. In this track  you will take extended studies in the above subjects, which will prepare you for postgraduate studies and career in research.

Study structure of Environmental and Resource Economics (small changes are possible)
Structure Module Courses (5 credits each)
Core Module (15 credits) ERE I Environmental Economics Environmental Economics I: Theory; Environmental Economics II: Mechanisms; Climate and Energy Policy
Core Module (15 credits) ERE II Natural Resource Economics Advanced Natural Resource Economics; Introduction to Dynamic Optimization; Economics of Aquatic Resources: Numerical Models
Core Module (15 credits) AGERE Methods Course examples: Cost-Benefit Analysis; Econometrics; Valuation; General Equilibrium Modeling; Applied Linear Programming; Advanced Microeconomics
Thematic Module (15 credits) Choose one: ERE III Climate Studies; ERE IV Baltic Sea Studies; ERE V Forest Studies; AGERE Module Course examples: Agri-environmental Policy; Management of Environmental Problems in Aquatic Ecosystems; International Environmental Agreements Related to Marine Areas and Resources; Risk Management in Agriculture; courses by visiting foreign lecturers
Other studies (25 credits)   Course examples: Project Course; Internship; Academic Writing
Master's Thesis and Master's Thesis Seminar (35 credits)

Research Track: Choose 30 credits from AGERE Methods module. In this track the Core Module courses will include PhD level exercises, which give you a total of 15 additional credits to be used for PhD studies.

Agricultural Economics

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 markets 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 to recognize the factors contributing them.  You will examine the operation of food markets 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. Courses are taught either in Finnish, Swedish or English.

The structure of the studies consist of three parts, or core modules:

  1. at least one 15 credit core module out of three optional
  2. one 15 credit core module AGERE Methods;
  3. one 15 credit core module AGERE Module.

Part 1 comprises at least one of the following 15 credit modules: Agricultural Markets and Policy, Production Economics and Farm Management or Entrepreneurship. The Entrepreneurship is lectured in Finnish. Part 2, the core module on methods, can be compiled through various methodological courses. Part 3 finally is a 15 credit module on Agricultural Economics and Environmental and Resource Economics. The studies encompass a practical training period and seminars, and they can include career orientation and career planning. The Master’s Thesis project will enable you to apply and develop your theoretical and methodological skills. It develops your abilities in scientific thinking and project management and will serve as a good reference for your future career.

Study structure of Agricultural Economics (small changes are possible)
Structure Module (choose one of AGE I-III) Courses (5 credits each)
Core Module (15 credits) AGE I Agricultural Markets and Policy Price Analysis and Market Structure of the Agrifood Supply Chain I; Price Analysis and Market Structure of the Agrifood Supply Chain II; International Agricultural Trade and Trade Theory
Core Module (15 credits) AGE II Production Economics and Farm Management Risk Management in Agriculture; Production and Cost Theory; Theories and Application in Farm Management
Core Module (15 credits) AGE III Entrepreneurship (in Finnish) Business Analysis of Growth-oriented Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (10 credits); Course in marketing or accounting
Core Module (15 credits) AGERE Module Courses both from Agricultural Economics and Environmental and Resource Economics
Core Module (15 credits) AGERE Methods Course examples: Cost-Benefit Analysis; Econometrics; Valuation; General Equilibrium Modeling; Applied Linear Programming; Advanced Microeconomics
Other studies (40 credits)   Course examples: Project Course; Internship; Academic Writing
Master's Thesis and Master's Thesis Seminar (35 credits)

 

You are expected to have intermediate level understanding of economics and particularly microeconomics (about consumer theory and theory of the firm) as well as basic understanding of the mathematical and statistical tools applied in economics. At the center of mathematical prerequisites are the tools to analyze constrained optimization problems such as Lagrange method. The important prerequisites in statistics are ordinary and generalized least squares.

These topics may be refreshed at the beginning of the studies.

For the more detailed admission requirements, please follow this link.

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 such as NorMER (Nordic Centre for Research on Marine Ecosystems and Resources under Climate Change). Our partner universities include

  1. University of Kiel
  2. Norwegian School of Economics
  3. Norwegian University of Life Sciences
  4. University of Southern Denmark
  5. University of Algarve.

 

Teaching in Agricultural, Environmental and Resource Economics is based on the active cooperation between students and teachers. Situated in Viikki Campus the programme offers an international and active learning environment, in which teaching includes both traditional and modern practices such as lectures, group works, projects, seminars and workshops. The teachers of  the programme have been awarded multiple teaching awards such as the Lecturers of the Year 2010 awarded for the Environmental and Resource Economics teachers by Palmenia (University of Helsinki). In addition the teachers are actively developing the best teaching practices for example as members of the University of Helsinki Teacher's Academy.

Teachers of Agricultural Economics

Teachers of Environmental and Resource Economics

 

Both study tracks have their own student associations. In addition to them you may participate in student organizations at the campus as well as at the university level. See here for student life at the University of Helsinki. Below you will find greetings from one of our student associations:

"Vuorovaikeutus, or VV as it is more familiarly known, is the student association for students of Environmental and Resource Economics. Even though we call ourselves a student association, we are more than that! VV is for the alumni too, and we have plenty of events connecting past and present students, ranging from discussions on current environmental topics to after work drinks.

Student life in Viikki is very community spirited. You will never be stuck alone with your school work or last minute cramming, since there are always loads of your fellow students there to work together with. VV organises lunches every week, where you can easily have a chat together and get to know people attending the same courses as you.

During the semester VV-members spend time together outside lectures and libraries too. We have games nights, sports events like beach volleyball and bubble soccer, plenty of parties together with other student associations, and also excursions in Finland and abroad. Recent trips include St Petersburg, Tallinn, Krakow and the Western coast of Finland, where we did lots of sightseeing and visited businesses and organisations related to our study field. There is always a warm welcome where ever VV turns up!"

EN­VIR­ON­MENTAL AND RESOURCE ECO­NOM­ICS

The study track Environmental and Resource Economics offers promising career paths in government, research, consultancy, industry, NGOs and international organisations. Based on the recent career monitoring data covering years  2003-2016 the main work assignments of graduates from the study track are related to research (33 %), planning, development and government (31 %) and consulting and education (10 %). To obtain a better view on some the career possibilities, please read the alumni interviews.

AG­RI­CUL­TURAL ECO­NOM­ICS

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. Read also our alumni interviews.

Upon successfully completing Master’s level studies you will have excellent qualifications to enter PhD programmes in environmental and resource economics as well as in agriculture economics both in Finland and abroad. One possibility is to apply for the Doctoral Programme in Sustainable Use of Renewable Natural Resources at the University of Helsinki.