Advanced Studies

Nov 15, 2016 John Stumbos
New Master of Science offered in Environmental Policy and Management

A group of ecology graduate students on an orientation trip to Mono Lake in the eastern Sierra Nevada in September 2014. The new Master of Science in Environmental Planning and Management will add to the ranks of graduate students starting next fall. (Michael Koontz/UC Davis)
UC Davis is offering a new Master of Science degree in Environmental Policy and Management (EPM). The priority application deadline for the inaugural class, which begins next fall, is January 15, 2017.

“This program will leverage the position of UC Davis as one of the world’s strongest campuses in policy-relevant environmental research,” said Michael Springborn, associate professor in the Department of Environmental Science and Policy. “We are looking for highly motivated students with scientific and engineering backgrounds who seek applied professional careers in environmental policy and management.”

Springborn is the faculty chair for the new program, which will be housed within the John Muir Institute of the Environment. Students admitted to the program can expect to receive advanced training in applying environmental science to real-world environmental policy and management issues, such as climate change, species conservation, and water management. Graduates of the program will have the quantitative skills necessary to integrate technical and scientific expertise in a social-political-natural context to provide effective environmental policy and management solutions.

“As a global leader in the environmental sciences, UC Davis will play an increasingly important role in developing effective strategies to address the impacts of climate change,” said Ronald Tjeerdema, the college’s associate dean for environmental sciences. “This new program will better prepare our graduates to effectively contribute to important environmental policy decisions at the state, national and international levels.” 

The EPM program is designed to address needs in several areas:

  • Students and employers often ask for better and more formal preparation to bridge the differences between scientific academic background and policy and management work, with emphasis on communicating technical information in various management and policy contexts. 
  • Increased attention is being placed on the co-development of science for policy and management. Doing so requires training individuals with the interdisciplinary skills to understand both communities. 
  • Environmental problem-solving increasingly requires more analytical capability within a political and economic decision-making framework. 
  • Real and rigorous problem-solving skills involving analysis, communication, and negotiation are needed for students with scientific backgrounds involved in policymaking and management positions. 

The priority application deadline to guarantee consideration for acceptance into EPM is January 15, 2017. The prospective student fellowship application deadline also is January 15. No applications will be accepted after April 15. To learn more about EPM and to apply, please visit the program website at or email [email protected]

Michael Springborn
Department of Environmental Science and Policy
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