Document Actions

Transition Management (MSc)

Master of Science (MSc)

Überblick / Overview

TM - Bildseite

Zur Illustration: Felder aus der Luft fotografiert.

Foto: rawpixel/

Englischer Studiengang

This course of study is taught in English.



The English-language Master’s Programme "Transition Management" is an interdisciplinary study programme established by five faculties of Justus Liebig University Giessen, headed by the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Nutritional Sciences and Environmental Management (Faculty 09). The Center for International Development and Environmental Research (ZEU) at Giessen University contributes topical input and teaching modules specifically tailored to the needs of the programme.

Transition Management addresses the enormous economic and political transformations we observe in many transition and emerging economies worldwide. Their societies are changing from state management to a market economy, from autocracy to democracy, often at a rapid pace and at higher income and technology levels than in a typical developing country. The group of transition countries includes the successor states of the former Soviet Union, the countries of Eastern and South Eastern Europe, as well as transition economies in Asia, such as China and Vietnam. The programme also provides relevant insight on emerging economies in Latin America and Africa. Graduates of Transition Management qualify for senior positions in private and public sector management, public administration, academia, and international technical and economic cooperation.

Justus Liebig University Giessen has been the first university in Germany addressing the specific problems of transition countries in an international, interdisciplinary study course, combining both theory and practical experience.


The Master's Programme Transition Management enables students:

  • to understand the complex processes and specific demands of transition and emerging economies
  • to comprehend the various areas of transition, including economic, legal, political, social, agricultural, and environmental aspects and their interlinkages
  • to gain knowledge as well as practical competences in methods and strategies to enhance the transition process
  • to train their soft skills by learning and working in international and interdisciplinary teams.

Target Group

The Master's Programme appeals to students who are interested in both learning about the complex problems of transition countries as well as developing approaches to overcome these problems by linking economic, political and environmental aspects.
A background in related academic disciplines of economics, law, and/or the social sciences is required.



Since July 2006

Composition of the Study Programme

Composition of the Study Programme


Master of Science (MSc)

Duration of studies

4 semesters – 120 credit points (cp)


Composition of degree programme

The study programme consists of individual modules. Each module comprises four semester hours per week. Students complete the modules with a final examination as given in the module description. The individual module grades determine the final grade of the study programme.
The course consists of eight mandatory modules (core modules) and six optional modules (profile modules), an industrial internship (or two more optional modules) and the Master thesis. The concept of choosing profile modules individually enables students to select from a diverse range of study areas on top of a fundamental scientific education represented by the core modules.

Structure of the Master's Degree Course

The Master’s degree course consists of 16 modules (120 credits).

Students can choose between the following two structures:

Structure A
Core Competence 8 mandatory modules 48 credits
Profile Competence 6 optional modules 36 credits
Industrial internship 1 module 12 credits
Master’s thesis 1 module  24 credits
Total 16 modules 120 credits


Structure B
Core Competence 8 mandatory modules 48 credits
Profile Competence 8 optional modules 48 credits
Master’s thesis 1 module  24 credits
Total 16 modules 120 credits


Core Modules (Mandatory Courses)

  • Theory and Practice of Economic Development (6 CP)
  • Empirical Research Methods (6 CP)
  • International Law (6 CP)
  • Global Food Markets (6 CP)
  • Power and Democracy (6 CP)
  • Transition in Practice (6 CP)
  • Business Administration and Sustainability Management (6 CP)


Profile Modules

Students tailor their individual profile by selecting six modules and the internship or eight modules from the entire profile module catalogue of the faculty. Among the recommended English modules for this study programme are the following:

  • Resource Economics and Sustainable Management
  • Sustainable Agroecosystems
  • Sustainable Food Systems
  • Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services
  • Renewable Energy Transition
  • Climate Change and Economic Development
  • Food Politics
  • Transdisciplinary Sustainability Research
  • Socio-Economic Perspectives on Food Systems
  • Food and Nutrition Security and Development
  • Methods of Regional Analysis and Planning
  • Python for Environmental Scientists
  • Empirical Research Methods for Natural Resource Analysis
  • Democracy and Postcoloniality
  • Climate Change and Economic Development
  • Farming Systems in the Tropics
  • Concepts of Ecological Economics
  • Field-Work based Research in Socio-Economics
  • Land Governance for Sustainable Land Use in Africa
  • Agriculture, Ecosystem Functioning and Climate Change
  • Econometrics & Modelling Applications
  • Regulation of Agricultural Value Chains
  • The Economics of Nitrate Pollution
  • Special Topics of the UN Sustainable Development Goals I
  • Special Topics of the UN Sustainable Development Goals II
  • Introduction to International Trade
  • Applied Econometric Methods for the Social Sciences
  • International Agricultural Development
  • Sustainable Plant Protection
  • Statistical Learning
  • Transition to a Sustainable Bioeconomy
  • Land Use Change Projection with Q-GIS
  • Gender and Development
  • Industrial Organization (Faculty 02)
  • Theory of International Trade (Faculty 02)
  • Advanced Econometrics (Faculty 02)



Internship (optional) (12 CP)

The objective of the internship module is to give students examples of practice-oriented knowledge and skills from companies, institutions and other institutions of future careers. In particular, you should acquire knowledge about activities and processes in institutions that have a transformation-specific relationship or are active with or in transition countries. Students learn to associate theoretical knowledge and scientific methodology with practice. Internships are possible in all professional disciplines represented by a module of the study programme.
Furthermore, through experiencing practical problems of an economic, technical, organizational and social nature, the internship promotes the understanding of research and teaching at the university and reinforces the relation between study and practice.


Master Thesis (24 CP)

Students dedicate the major part of the 4th semester to writing the Master thesis. With the thesis, they prove their capability to investigate a given topic independently and scientifically within a given timeframe.



Start WS-engl: Commencement of studies

Commencement of studies

Only possible in the winter semester.



Application procedure

Depending on where you obtained either your university entrance certificate or your Bachelor degree, we differentiate two application procedures:

Case A

You need to use JLU’s application portal if

  • you hold a completed Bachelor’s degree obtained at a German university (the country of origin of your university entrance certificate is of no importance).
  • your JLU Bachelor programme is not yet complete. Please provide a preliminary report. The country of origin of your university entrance certificate is of no importance.
  • you obtained your university entrance certificate in Germany and attended a Bachelor programme at a German university other than JLU. Please provide a preliminary report if your programme is not yet completed.
  • you want to change to another degree programme at JLU. The country of origin of your university entrance certificate is of no importance.

Case B

You need to submit your application to uni-assist if

  • you hold a completed Bachelor’s degree obtained at a foreign university (the country of origin of your university entrance certificate is of no importance).
  • you obtained your university entrance certificate abroad and attended but not completed yet a Bachelor programme at a German university other than JLU or at any other university within EU. Please provide a preliminary report.
Application: deadline, intake capacity, fees

Intake capacity ("Numerus Clausus")

The intake capacity of this degree programme is not limited internally by the university.



Application for enrolment starts June. Please note that the application via uni-assist opens in May.
Application deadline: June 15 



No study fees are charged for this study program. However, students have to pay a semester contribution of approx. 300 EUR for administration and semester tickets (details).

Application: Admission requirements

Admission requirement

Applicants must hold a Bachelor's degree with at least 180 ECTS-points in one of the following scientific fields:

  • Agriculture
  • Nutrition
  • Natural or environmental sciences
  • Economics
  • Law
  • Political science

Proof of sufficient knowledge in economics, law, and/or the social sciences, i.e. at least 60 ECTS points in at least one of these subjects.

Applications without a relevant Bachelor degree will be examined individually as to whether the study requirements are fulfilled. A specialist commission at JLU will then decide on which qualifications can be accepted or whether additional qualifications are necessary. We cannot provide you with information on the status of acceptance before you fully completed the application process.



Application: Language requirements

Language requirements

As the entire degree course is taught in English, applicants must provide proof of sufficient knowledge of written and spoken English. Accepted proofs of language proficiency:

  1. either: TOEFL-Test ITB (internet-based test) with at least 95 points or IELTS-Test with at least grade of 7 in the academic test;
  2. or: Proof of obtaining a local higher education entrance qualification in one of the following countries: Australia, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, USA, United Kingdom, South Africa;
  3. or: Proof of a Bachelor’s degree in English in one of the following countries: Australia, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, USA, United Kingdom, South Africa;
  4. or: Proof of the UNIcert III certificate.


Further information-admission international

For further information please contact:

Registrar’s Office / Studierendensekretariat
Goethestrasse 58
Postal address: Postfach 11 14 40, 35359 Giessen
Tel.: 0641/99-16400

Career Options

Career Options / Career Opportunities

Career Options / Career Opportunities

Graduates of Transition Management work as project managers and consultants in private and public organisations involved in transition and development cooperation at national, supranational and international levels. They find employment as managers and specialists in private enterprises active in industry, the agricultural and nutritional sector, trade, banks, and financial services.

The graduation also allows entering a career as (junior) scientist in universities and non-university research institutions or as chief executive or public officer in national public administrations, ministries, EU institutions as well as in non-governmental organisations in the non-profit sector, think tanks, or representations of interest groups.


Course Directors

Transition Management (englischsprachig)

Prof. Dr. Martin Petrick

Department of Agricultural Policy and Market Research
Zeughaus, Senckenbergstraße 3, 35390 Giessen
Phone +49 (0) 641 99 37050

Office hours: by appointment

Further Information

Further Information: Dokumente

PDF documents for the courses of study


Prüfungs- und Studienordnungen

Courses offered in the course catalogue

 Electronical course catalogue (in German)

 List module (Informationen in English)

Master's Degree Programmes of Faculty 09

taught in German

taught in English

Any more questions?

Any more questions?
Information and consulting services of the JLU can be found in the category "Contact" on this page!