Why study Environment, Culture and Society at Edinburgh?

Photograph of person walking through woods with iPad
  • Our programme provides up-to-date knowledge of the contemporary issues and debates on the relationships between the environment, nature, culture and society.
  • The programme's interdisciplinary nature is ideal if you have a background in environmental humanities, social sciences, or creative arts.
  • You'll be taught by world-leading experts from a wide range of subject areas across the university. Some examples include geography, social and political studies, literature and archaeology.
  • There is a lot of flexibility in the programme, enabling you to customise your learning in areas you are most passionate about. This includes philosophy, policy, creative practice and political action.
  • This MSc is associated with the Edinburgh Climate Change Institute (ECCI), bringing together law, business, social science, technology, and policy experts to help develop a low-carbon society.

  • You will be part of a wide range of networks including School of GeoSciences Cultural and Historical Geography Research Group, School of GeoSciences Geographies of Social Justice Research Group, and Edinburgh Environmental Humanities Network.

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Online events

We're running a series of online events for applicants and offer holders.

These events will give you a unique opportunity to ask questions and find out more about studying with us at Edinburgh. 

Book your place

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Pre-arrival reading list

Your courses

This MSc programme comprises:

  • compulsory and option courses
  • dissertation

Courses are delivered by staff who are active researchers in each field.

Their expertise is supplemented by selected guest speakers, generally from industry or other research organisations.

You can find out more about compulsory and optional courses on the Degree Programme Tables.

Read more about selecting optional courses on the applicant website.

Your dissertation

Throughout your studies, we will work with you to prepare you for the dissertation project.

This will be your opportunity to explore a topic of your choice in relation to the programme and prepare a dissertation that you can use to demonstrate your work to potential employers. Previous topics that have been studied include: 

  • Neoliberalizing and Commodifying Nature in a Safari Park in Phu Quoc, Vietnam. 
  • Can Board Games Save Our Planet? 
  • Indigenous-Led Conservation: An Eco-Cultural Response to Pacific Salmon Decline in British Columbia, Canada. 
  • Hostility as Slow Violence: A Geographical Analysis of the Everyday Experiences of Practitioners working in the UK Asylum System. 

Where will you be taught?

The majority of our teaching on the MSc Environment, Culture and Society programme takes place in the Central Area of campus, including in the Edinburgh Climate Change Institute (ECCI).

Depending on the option courses you choose, you may study at various campus locations in Edinburgh.

Future of your subject

The ways that we think and imagine our relationship to the environment have shaped the ways we act towards it. In the future, it will be new ways of thinking that get us out of our current predicaments. This programme is thus fundamental to both understanding and changing out more-than-human worlds. 

Study the MSc

Video: geos-video-ECS-Tim-Study an MSc
Our programme director Professor Tim Cresswell shares why you should study an MSc in Environment, Culture and Society.

Field trips/excursions

This programme provides several day trips and workshop opportunities across southern Scotland.

In the past, there have been trips to Jupiter Artland, Dalkeith Country Park, The Royal Botanical Gardens, Rosslyn Chapel, and Bass Rock. 

There are no additional charges for compulsory field trips.

Our student Kylie on studying the MSc

Video: geos-video-ECS-Kylie-our student
Our student Kylie shares her experience of studying MSc Environment, Culture and Society at Edinburgh.


School of GeoSciences scholarships

Scholarships and student funding

You can find funding opportunities, tuition fees and costs of living for prospective UK and international postgraduate students on the University website.

You are also encouraged to undertake your own research into the range of potential scholarships and other funding outside the University for which you may be eligible.


Man with iPad sitting by the window

We are proud of our graduates, and many have gone on to jobs in government, NGOs, industry and academia around the world. 

Some examples include:

  • Conservation International
  • National Forestry Commission
  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • The Climate Group
  • The Conservation Volunteers
  • UNESCO World Heritage Centre
  • Provincial Ministry of Environmental and Climate Change (Canada)
  • KPMG Sustainability (Japan)
  • Environmental Law Institute (USA)
  • Barcelona Lab for Urban Environmental Justice and Sustainability
  • American Sportfishing Association (USA)
  • Clean Up Australia


graduation photo

We have a thriving global network of alumni living and working around the world. As well as individual MSc programme networks, the School of GeoSciences has a large alumni network, which you can join after graduation. You'll have the opportunity to engage with and learn from like minded individuals who can offer advice about shaping your career path.

You can read our alumni profiles to find out more about our graduates experiences throughout their studies and beyond on our website:

Alumni profiles

If you prefer to watch a video, you can watch our alumni interviews on YouTube:

Alumni videos

Your programme director and cohort lead.

Find out more about your programme director and cohort lead.

Photograph of Tim smiling at the camera.

Professor Tim Cresswell

The programme director and cohort lead for this MSc Environment, Culture and Society programme is Tim Cresswell.

Tim's research interests focus on the themes of place and mobility including work on ways of writing about place, the ways place is implicated in good, just and meaningful lives, and the politics of mobility.

He also writes and publishes poetry that focuses on life in the Anthropocene.

Contact us

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