University of Pécs

International programmes


Urban Social Development

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities
Certificate: Postgraduate Certificate in Urban Social Development
Duration of training: 2 semesters
Language of instruction: English
Head of the programme: Dr. Gábor SZÖLLŐSI


Description of the programme:  

The objective of the study program is to provide professionals with theoretical and methodological tools and thereby enable them to actively participate in special policy making, to apply innovative and complex approaches in determining developmental goals and in elaborating strategies; and to actively take part in implementation in social areas of urban development.  


Competencies to be acquired:  

  • Understanding the complexity of  environmental and social impacts of local/regional economic development
  • Understanding urban development that is manifested in transformations in the city texture
  • Ability to critically analyze the political responses to urban development challenges 
  • Understanding the interests of the different participants in social debates 
  • Understanding the opportunities and limitations inherent in representative and participatory democracy 
  • Understanding the local challenges and opportunities in good governance 
  • Identifying new challenges of global transformations 
  • Understanding the social and economic motivations in the background of the complex spatial (physical, social and economic) development processes in European and Hungarian cities. 
  • Understanding the foundations and interrelations of urban and regional levels of integrated strategic planning in regional development
  • Understanding the logic and tools in operative urban development 
  • Understanding the tools and interrelations of complex interventions (construction and social investments). The logic of project preparation. 


Certified consultants know: 

  • basic operational rules of the society, economics, politics, state and law;
  • the role, opportunities and limitations of representative and participatory democracy in establishing good governance in urban, settlement and regional levels, as it is reflected in main theories and in the European practice
  • the role of factors which inhibit the satisfaction of substantial needs, and fair and functional distribution of resources on urban, settlement community and regional levels; 
  • effective forms of enforcing human and citizen rights and social justice on urban and regional levels; 
  • the relations and proportions among institutional and care systems of social security and social protection on urban and regional levels;
  • social problems and characteristics and special European and domestic developmental paradigms of the region and of the city;
  • relevant Hungarian, European Union and international documents on development policies; 
  • the one and a half century history and fundamental theories of urbanistics;
  • theories on social and economic drivers of the complex spatial developmental processes (physical, social and economic) characteristic of European and Hungarian cities;
  • fundaments and interrelations in the integrated regional strategic planning on urban and regional levels;
  • the logic, organizational, legal and financing tools in operative urban development;
  • tools of complex (construction and social) interventions to be synchronized; interrelations of the areas and the logic of project preparation;
  • European theories and recent results of socially sustainable urban development ;
  • European theories, practices and tools in social urban rehabilitation; 
  • global social processes and problems;
  • social theory, sociological and research methodologies; 
  • user-level knowledge on infocommunication systems and computer-aided analysis;
  • basic knowledge on legal regulations and professional ethics concerning the protection of natural and built environment.


Certified consultants are able: 

  • to work on integrated urban development strategies and complex action plans in urban development  in complex, interdisciplinary teams and shape social dimensions of sustainable urban development;
  • to understand and professionally explore the social and economic background of the problems in urban development; 
  • to conduct interdisciplinary analysis of social processes in the cities and regions;
  • to measure social and economic effectiveness and societal acceptance of urban development measures and analyze factors that influence development policies;
  • to identify and analyze social needs, problems and risks;
  • to plan, manage and implement social dimensions of intervention processes and special policy decisions; 
  • for a structured and constructive application of tools of participatory democracy;
  • to take social urban rehabilitation action, to plan the social dimensions of the projects and organize and control implementation;
  • to plan social dimensions of complex urban rehabilitation actions and professionally support implementation;
  • to organize and develop communities and represent their interests;
  • to cooperate in establishing and running social organizations;
  • to develop and manage research plans;
  • to provide professional consultation and prepare decisions;
  • to conduct theoretical and empiric research; innovative developing;
  • to process new problems and phenomena;
  • to apply integrated knowledge in social sciences; 
  • to individually analyze or judge others’ analysis and form an opinion on the given field.  


Skills and abilities for professional practice:

  • Sensitivity to social situations 
  • The ability to identify values and interests; treat own interests and values in a professional manner
  • Ability to work individually and creatively 
  • Ability to work in organizations, interdisciplinary teams and international collaborations
  • Empathy
  • Ability to work in teams 
  • Sensitivity to spatial dimensions of social processes 
  • Sensitivity to physical and financial aspects of social and economic processes 
  • Ability for rational analysis, problem-solving, decision-making and reasoning 
  • Effective communication skills with various persons, groups and with the public in different ways and in different situations, 
  • Ability to develop presentations, documentations and plans
  • Identify substantial factors; creativity 
  • Form an autonomous professional opinion, 
  • Critical attitudes, problem-centered approach 
  • Results-oriented problem-solving thinking


The certification may be utilized in the following work environments and activities:

  • Controlling authorities, 
  • Collaborating organizations, 
  • Monitoring institutions, 
  • Chambers of industry and commerce
  • Developmental agencies, 
  • Local governments
  • Urban development associations 
  • Microregional developmental associations
  • Offices of proposal development
  • Core areas of the study program and the respective credits: 


Introductory courses:  

15 credits: urban sociology, project management, theories on public policy, introduction into research methodologies


Advanced courses: 

35 credits: Epistemological explorations in economic, social and political mechanisms of the city as a specific structure, with special regard to global and local aspects of development policy target systems. (Sustainable urban development, integrated urban development, urban social problems and special policy responses.) Developing skills and abilities related to strategy building, a comparative analysis on national systems and on local social-economic conditions in the framework of project workshops. Addressing challenges, opportunities and limitations in participatory democracy. The means of operative urban development and the logic of complex project preparation. Acquiring knowledge on legal, financing and organizational means of realizing projects in urban social rehabilitation. Complex project preparation processes of social urban rehabilitation projects. A comprehensive view on the one and a half century history of urbanistics. The 100-hour field practice is part of the advanced courses.


Application requirements:

  • Application form
  • Candidates applying for admission to non-degree studies should possess degree qualification in either social science or humanities, eonomics, natural sciences or engineering, technology
  • Copy of degree (including transcript of records)
  • CV
  • Motivation letter (introduction plus field of interest, etc.) in 3000 to 3500 characters.
  • English language knowledge of B2 level (attach the copy of language exam certificate, if available)
  • Copy of valid passport or national ID
  • Medical certificate, vacciation card (showing that you are immunized against HEP B) and HIV test
  • Transfer receipt of the EUR 140 application fee


Please send the documents specified above to the following e-mail address:

Please send in all of the required documents. Incomplete applications will not be processed!


Admission examination Deadline for application Tuition fee Application fee Skype interviews Evaluation deadline
language test and motivation interview May 31 EUR 1500 per semester EUR 140 June 6-12 June 20



Application form



Bank details for application fee transfer 

Name of beneficiary University of Pécs
Address of beneficiary 7622 Pécs, Vasvári P. u. 4., Hungary
Name of Bank Magyar Államkincstár/Hungarian Treasury
(the intermediary bank is: Magyar Nemzeti Bank/ Central Bank of Hungary)
Address of Bank 1054. Budapest, Hold u. 4.
Beneficiary’s IBAN HU30 10024003-00282716-01110009
Comment field EUR140 - PST250065, applicant’s name



For more information on the application process, please contact: 

Ms. Mária Lajos
International coordinators
Phone: 72/501-500/24126
University of Pécs, Faculty of Humanities
H-7624 Pécs, Ifjúság u. 6., Hungary


For more information on the study programmes, please visit: 

The English website of the Institute of Social Relations