The Master of Science in Urban Studies (4Cities) is a unique two-year interdisciplinary and international programme. 4Cities takes students to Brussels, Copenhagen, Vienna, Madrid and a number of surrounding cities. The master adds a European perspective to the field of Urban Studies: it wants to break up and to open the national perspective on urban problems. The growing importance of globalisation and the shift towards a world of flows calls for a new approach in important fields of urban policy like culture, economy, planning
The strength of the programme results from the integration of analytical skills typical for the (social-) sciences and the more design oriented skills of planning and architecture. The need for interdisciplinary knowledge and skills as opposed to the more narrowly defined academic disciplines is strong.
During a period of two years, students take part in an interdisciplinary programme and study in four cities: Brussels, Copenhagen, Madrid and Vienna. Students live in each of the cities for one semester, except for the first block (Brussels) which takes a few weeks longer and the last block which consists of a short intensive stay in Madrid. Students spend most of the last semester in a location of their choice, where they are able to work on their master thesis.
In each city the programme consists of:
Analysing urban society and space (urban forms) with adapted methodologies, making diagnoses, understanding data, describing problems
Proposing solutions for urban problems and design alternatives (planning, project management, scenario research)
Making a presentation of analysis and proposals
Working in a multidisciplinary team and to take the position of interface; intermediate
Adopting a critical attitude
Students at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel are not just mere numbers. A lot of attention goes to making sure that you can study in the best possible situation. There are numerous staff members ready to assist you and give advice on all topics related to student life: practical information, medical assistance and finance, study planning, sports and culture, health, transport, housing and food, etc.