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General Characteristics


The Master of Science Global Urban Health (MSc GUH) is an interdisciplinary modular course for postgraduate students covering one year.
The MSc GUH starts in the winter semester and is conducted as a FULL TIME STUDY (presence in Freiburg from September to May) with subsequent field study (for the MSc Thesis) to be completed abroad or as a literature study in Freiburg.  The MSc Thesis can be carried out subsequently (May – September of the following years) or within 5 years after starting the course.

The course includes interdisciplinary approaches with inputs from several faculties of the Freiburg University and external lecturers, organized by the “Centre for Medicine and Society” (ZMG) under the leadership of the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Freiburg. Other Institutions of Higher Education in Freiburg as well as external lecturers from WHO/Geneva, UNEP/Geneva, GIZ/Bonn, EU/Brussels, Schools of Tropical Medicine in Liverpool, Basel, Heidelberg among others are involved.


Different topic areas in relation to urban health needs are covered such as:



Health assessment & interventions:


Primary mental care dealing with stress,

depression and other issues

Communicable diseases & transmission dynamics

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) & prevention

Healthy growth, development and aging

Social mobilization strategies

Management of urban health systems

Quality management

 Alternative medical systems


Social challenges:

Migration, violence, gender issues

Social mobilization

Analysis tools:


Epidemiology & statistics

Social sciences including economics

Geography & anthropology

Environmental threats & treatment:

Air, water, noise and soil pollution

Urban micro-climates

Urban planning and land use





The overall goal of the intensive MSc program is to provide participants` with the following competences:


  • to develop analytical and management skills to meet the challenges of urban health;
  • to identify and quantify biological-psychological-social threats to health and risk factors in urban areas
  • to develop knowledge and skills in the field of prevention,  control,  program development, monitoring and evaluation for improving urban health;
  • to design and conduct research projects in the field of urban health;
  • to make proactive evidence-based decisions and to gain leadership qualities and effective working skills according to the professional background;
  • to enhance independent and reflective thinking and inspire an interest for lifelong learning.