1. Why did you choose this program?
Climate change, resource scarcity, social inequalities: We are currently facing existential environmental and social challenges. What makes these challenges so complex is that their underlying causes are of systemic nature and that effective solutions require an interplay of truly responsible politics, business and individuals. Therefore, real change and progress in solving the greatest challenges of our time requires future changemakers with the capacity to identify and capture synergies for sustainable impact at the interaction between politics, business and society. The SSE-SciencesPo Double Degree has the potential to serve as a catalyst for this type of future changemakers.
My favorite part of the Double Degree in Environmental Policy and Management is therefore its interdisciplinarity: The program enabled me to build bridges between business, politics, society and the underlying ecological systems, particularly in three dimensions. Firstly, the courses helped me to acquire important technical knowledge at the intersection of the aforementioned disciplines. Secondly, the interaction with students from business, politics and environmental sciences helped me to develop a differentiated opinion and communicate my convictions effectively. And finally, the interdisciplinary degree gives me credibility to enact change from within companies, organizations or institutions in business and society.
1. Why did you choose this program?
Today’s global challenges and complex systems of international interdependence in business, economics and politics, requires new dimensions of cross-boundary analytical thinking and new types of leadership. I chose to pursue the double degree program with SSE and Sciences Po because I felt that it offered me a unique opportunity to develop exactly the skills needed to prepare me for a high-impact and successful future career in this context.
2. What is your favorite part of the program?
My favorite part about the double-degree program is that it gave me the opportunity to tailor my studies after my own personal interests and career objectives. Personally, it allowed me to combine my passion for international policy-making with valuable quantitative skills and analytical tools from the field of economics. Secondly, I think that the international format has provided me with a wider set of perspectives, highly valuable to me both professionally and personally. Lastly, through the program I made great new friendships with people from diverse backgrounds and unforgettable memories from two of Europe’s most exciting cities.
My passion for understanding how the global financial industry actors can best understand and navigate in the ever-more complex macro environment as well as how countries can create and benefit from well-functioning capital markets, made me immediately intrigued by the Sciences Po-SSE dual degree program within International Economic Policy and Finance. The dual degree program offered unrivalled opportunity for me to further explore my interests in these areas at two of the most highly regarded institutions. I realized that my future career aspirations would fully benefit from the broad scope of the program, and that in a rapidly globalizing society, it is important for me to have an international career.
The studies at Sciences Po gave me a broad understanding of the global issues that policy makers are facing today and offered a policy-oriented view on macro-economic conditions. The program has an international emphasis (the whole course offering has an international focus) and the ability for one to focus on Regional concentrations is unique and helped me to specialize further into policy within East Asia which was of particular interest to me. During my Corporate Finance specialization at the SSE most courses have been based on real-life cases and incorporate the firm-perspective, focused on how corporates should make decisions and act. The practical approach has been incredibly valuable to me. Combining these two programs, has not only fulfilled my academic curiosity, but equally served as a perfect pathway to my future career.
When I decided to apply for a graduate school after my bachelor's, I wanted to do something inter-disciplinary. On one hand, I wanted to study international affair related matters, but on the other hand, I also wanted to delve deeper into applied economics. I wanted a course that would give me a perspective to understand the ongoing problems that we as a society face but I also wanted to get practical skills to be able to fight these issues.
My search led me straight to the dual-degree program at Sciences Po and the Stockholm School of Economics. The course on MA International Development and MSc Economics was exactly what I was looking for. Paris School of International Affairs at Sciences Po broadened my horizon, I got an opportunity to take exciting courses such as Diplomacy and Negotiation, International Development policies, and most of all Gender studies. Whereas SSE gave me the technical tools and skills to concretely tackle these problems. My two favorite courses at SSE were Development Economics and Behavioral Economics, both of which provided me the framework needed to fight the pressing problems of our time. I got an opportunity to apply the lessons from Development Economics and wrote a thesis on Chhaupadi, a gender-discriminatory practice in Nepal. This allowed me to dig-deeper into the subject material of my choice.
Moreover, the dual degree also gave me an opportunity to live in two exciting European cities - Paris and Stockholm. I traveled around, met people, made many new friends from across the world. And most importantly, I have the master's diploma from the two leading European universities!
1. Why did you choose this program?
Interdisciplinarity and an international outlook were the key reasons why I chose the Double Degree at Stockholm School of Economics and Sciences Po Paris. The unique combination of International Affairs and Business & Management was exactly what I was looking for to further develop personally, academically and professionally. Living in Stockholm and Paris attracted me not only to expand my foreign language skills but also to profit from the rich cultural offer inside and outside of the universities.
Studying at two different graduate schools meant getting to know many different people with diverse backgrounds, new perspectives on learning and problem-solving as well as different teaching approaches. At Sciences Po, I appreciated the freedom to choose among many different classes covering topics from environmental conservation to multilateral conflict management to migration and human rights. At SSE, I was able to dig deeper and fully concentrate on the two or three subject areas within a close-knit class cohort. The environment at SSE encouraged me to develop my own profile and pursue my own ideas. By writing my master thesis about social entrepreneurship in the Global South I could combine the learnings from the Double Degree and connect the development and the business sphere.
Over the two years, guidance from and discussion with lecturers, guest speakers, mentors and fellow students gave me valuable insights and strengthened my self-confidence. I am now looking forward to start working life at the interface of business and society.
During the application period, I interviewed with different organizations in the field of innovation and digitalization and always felt that the interdisciplinary Double Degree was considered a major asset by the firms. Also, the content and „vocabulary“ of the SSE courses in the MBM program were helpful. I felt that recruiters in the digital innovation field were looking for people who enjoy thinking across disciplines and who can communicate clearly why they are passionate about working in an interdisciplinary setting. In retrospect, I think the Double Degree equips every student with a whole bunch of unique stories and experiences that make up for a great and memorable conversation in interviews.
I would definitely encourage every future Double Degree student to simply seize as many opportunities as possible during the program and then see how this creates your very own story. I also think it’s good to emphasise that in the end you are perceived as a generalist rather than a specialist.
The double degree is a unique opportunity to study at two top-tier European institutions. I have gained valuable perspectives as well as a network that opened up many career opportunities and laid the foundation for a truly exciting international career.
Why did you choose this program?
I originally have a Business background from my undergraduate studies. During that time, I was often surprised that we learned a lot about how to succeed in Business, but very little about the broader economic framework and the implications of our actions on society as a whole. In my continued studies I wanted to better understand this interplay.
At the same time, however, I also intended to deepen my major academic interest in Finance. Studying International Economic Policy at Sciences Po and Finance at SSE in this Dual Degree allowed me to address both these interests, at two universities that truly excel in their fields.
What is your favorite part of the program?
I particularly enjoy spending two years in two impressively stimulating environments. First, Paris and Stockholm are highly historical, dynamic and diverse cities which are pleasures getting to know.
But even more, I feel privileged to be surrounded by people that inspire me. At Sciences Po, I didn’t only learn from professors that decisively shaped the institutional framework of our world, but also enjoyed exciting discussions with my local friends about topics like Financial Regulation or the Sustainable Development Goals.
Now at SSE we sometimes talk how actual Business is affected by, for instance, Regulation and how to cope with this from an organizational side. Moments like that show me the importance to understand both the international framework and the perspective of the individual organization.
Why would you encourage others to apply for the program?
This program is excellent for you if you want to intensively deepen your knowledge in two different fields and thereby develop a unique profile of expertise. Using the combination of two full master degrees can help you to become a reflected decision maker that can contribute in fields as diverse as international institutions, governments or business.
If you are eager to see many new perspectives and experience two highly enriching, yet fast and and sometimes challenging years, this program is right for you.