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Regular version of the site

Programme Overiew

Master's Programme of HSE, St. Petersburg, “Urban Development and Governance"  
(direction 38.04.04 “State and Municipal Management”)

Master's Program of HSE, St. Petersburg, “Urban Development and Governance" aimed at providing studies in the frame-work of the broader direction  “Public Administration”,  was launched  in 2017.

The program is based on the former broader program “Public Administration” existed  since 2008. In contrast with the previous program “Urban Development and Governance" Program is focused on issues of urban planning, development and governance. It also pays more attention to urban and regional economics and quantitative methods of spatial economic analysis and programs justification.

Its goal is to prepare  highly qualified specialists able to participate in the processes of preparation, adoption, implementation, evaluation and expert support for  decision making of public authorities and businesses on  the development issues of cities and urban  territories.  

 The program combines formation of managerial skills with knowledge of urban and regional economies and with mastering of methods of planning and evaluation of programs and projects. The main object of managerial activity of the graduates is the city as a complex socio-economic system, as well as city’s certain territories,  which are being developed not only by the city and local government bodies, public sector organizations, but also by business, expert and urban communities.


 The program is implemented in cooperation with the relevant administrative bodies of Saint-Petersburg and Leningrad oblast, leading research, consulting and design companies in St. Petersburg and two basic partners, established their chairs in HSE: ICSER “Leontief Centre” and the Administration of St. Petersburg Governor.

The partnership with the relevant organizations of St. Petersburg enables  students to study the advanced Russian  and  international urban development management experience, to meet specific problems of urban development, to participate in the processes of grounding and preparing the forecasting and planning documents, large-scale projects and territorial development programs, also at the  research seminar and in specific projects and studies (traineeships within the framework of the research seminars and project work).


The program lasts 2 years.

 Basic courses:

1.   Theory and tools of modern Public Administration,
2.   Public Sector Economics.

 Compulsory subjects of the program:

1.   Spatial development and management;

2.   Strategic planning of social and economic development at sub-national levels;

3.    Urban economics;

4.   Impact Evaluation of Public Programs and Policies

 Adaptive courses:

1.   Basic Course of micro and macroeconomics - selected from MOOCs (suggested course "Economics", Kim I.A., Higher School Of Economics)

2.   Basic course of econometrics - selected from MOOCs (suggested course "Econometrics", Demeshev B.B.,  Higher School Of Economics)

Special elective courses:

1.   Investment projects in urban development;

2.    Innovations in the urban environment management;

3.   Budget system and public finance management;

4.   Spatial planning;

5.   Regional branding.

Research seminars are focused on the modern methods of managing development of the cities and urban areas, including international webinar "Development of Urban and Industrial Areas".

Partner organizations allow students to do practical trainings in executive authorities and expert organizations on the basis of their theses, coordinated with the employer.


 The specialists in the field of urban development and management are in demand  in the following organizations:

  • State authorities of subjects of the RF and  local government bodies responsible for the socio-economic and  territorial planning, attracting  investments, implementing  large projects,  public-private partnerships  and  territorial  marketing;
  • Companies (also with city’s share and  infrastructural state/municipal enterprises), which  implement large-scale projects  of  territorial  development and  reshaping,  engineering and transport infrastructure development;
  • Consulting companies, design and research organizations specializing in the elaboration and justification of planning documentation, regional planning and forecasting, attraction of investment, preparation of investment projects, territorial marketing ;
  • Public sector organizations (city/regional level).
  • Graduated students wishing to continue their education  may enroll in the HSE Doctoral School (Economics) or in a PhD program in one of our partner universities abroad.

Potential skills and knowledge:

Graduating the program implies the possession of specific skills, based on knowledge of modern economic theory, methods of econometric analysis and knowledge of the best Russian and international practice.

Graduates will be able:

  • To  conduct analytical processing of social and economic data on urban and regional development;
  • To make up appropriate forecasting and analytical recommendations on the issues of state and municipal authorities’ activities in the field of the management of urban development;
  • To provide expert support to the elaboration and evaluation of projects and programs for the urban areas development,

Program’s advantages:

Lecturers, research seminars facilitators, and curators of project activities are leading practitioners in the field of territorial development: representatives of relevant departments of St. Petersburg and Leningrad oblast Administrations, representatives of investment companies, international financial organizations, real estate development, maintenance and construction companies.

Some of the compulsory and elective courses, as well as certain modules of the research  seminars are taught in English with the participation and under the leadership of foreign lecturers and researchers.

 Together with the Graduate Program “Urban and Regional Planning” (Florida State University, USA), we conduct a regular webinar "Development of Urban and Industrial Areas" (in January-April). The focus of this exercise is on evaluating the effects of the implementation of transport and infrastructural projects, development of industrial clusters, special zones and other large urban and industrial development projects.

The University and the School of Social Sciences and Area Studies provide students with ample opportunities to study during one or more modules in one of the foreign partner universities of HSE, St. Petersburg. In particular, our Program has long-term cooperation and exchange agreement with Master’s Program of Politecnico di Milano “Urban Planning and Policy Design” and an experience of joint summer-schools organization with Master’s Program of the University of Maryland “Urban Studies and Planning”.