MSc in Agri-Food and Sustainable Development Co-op

Key Points

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This course is the only one-year master’s degree of its kind that fully integrates co-operative approaches to the study of sustainable development and agri-food. It is particularly practical, both in practice and in the skills you learn. It will prepare you to work in organisations addressing current and future socio-economic and environmental challenges, including climate change, collaborative economies and sustainable rural communities.

Program description

This master’s course will provide participants with a deeper understanding of cooperatives, sustainable development and the agri-food system. This is a unique course with a very strong practical emphasis and will equip participants with the organisational and management skills necessary to make innovative contributions to the development of local economies, with particular emphasis on co-operatives, social enterprises and food enterprises in Ireland and overseas. It is aimed at graduates from a wide range of disciplines who wish to pursue careers in sustainable development and innovative practices leading to positions in the food sector (ranging from local food businesses to large multinationals), local and international rural development, sharing and collaborative economy, NGOs, innovative community enterprises including cooperatives and social enterprises.

The Master in Cooperatives, Agri-Food and Sustainable Development is taught over 12 months and includes a work placement opportunity.

Career options

Graduates can expect to work in cooperatives and other third sector organisations (e.g. social enterprises, voluntary organisations, charities); international, non-governmental (NGO) and business development organisations; rural development policy and support (e.g. animation); consultancy (in agri-food, rural development, third sector); local economic development/business development staff through local authorities and consultancies; local food marketing and branding; corporate social responsibility roles in food and other industries.

Program structure

Students earn 60 credits as follows: 

  • Sustainable rural development (10 credits)
  • Cooperative and collaborative responses (10 credits)
  • Contemporary socio-economic and environmental problems (5 credits)
  • Marketing and Communications for Sustainable Food Production and Consumption (5 credits)
  • Branding food branding and digital media marketing (5 credits)
  • Economics of agri-food markets and value chain analysis (5 credits)
  • Sustainable food systems (5 credits)
  • The collaborative economy (5 credits)
  • Global food policy issues (5 credits)
  • Project Management (5 credits)

Students earn 30 credits as follows:

  • Practice-based research project (30 credits)

Admission requirements

  • An Honours degree (NFQ Level 8) or equivalent, in a wide range of disciplines.
  • In the case of international candidates, the foreign equivalent is required. In addition, a degree officially translated into English will be required.
  • IELTS 6.5, with no less than 5.5 in any component (or internationally (or its internationally recognised equivalent).

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