Hertie School of Governance

Public Administration (Executive), Master

  • Application Deadline
  • 12 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Full programme)
    Tuition (Full programme)
  • English
Guided by good governance principles, mid-career professionals from all sectors need innovative ideas to lead people, shape decisions, or change the institutions for which they work. The international and practice-oriented Executive MPA offered at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin/Germany tackles precisely these governance and management challenges.
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding


Some of the best ideas are born from dialogue with peers. Executive MPA participants are united in the desire to think critically and originally, and in their wish to hone their behaviour and enhance their leadership performance. Coming from government, international organisations, business and NGOs from all across Europe and beyond, the highly qualified Executive MPA participants bring together a broad range of experiences from all sectors and disciplines.

This Public Administration (Executive) programme is offered at the Hertie School of Governance.The programme's distinguished faculty is supported by experienced practitioners from the field and provides participants with hands-on training, analytical tools and transferable skills and enables them to develop competencies needed for senior management positions.

Programme Structure

Core Programme

The governance courses familiarise students with traditional and stateof-the-art concepts in policymaking. They address the challenges of working across sectors and borders, between institutions in one sector and within organisations themselves. Students gain insight into the strengths and weaknesses of national institutions as they coordinate with international networks, such as the EU.

Elective Programme
Concentrating on the application of concepts introduced in the core curriculum, students choose from a wide variety of electives to fit their individual needs and interests. Electives in the Leadership and Management area equip managers with concepts and tools needed in order to increase an organisation’s performance, to implement organisational change or, for example, to prepare it for the challenges of digital transformation. The Economics, Finances and Methods electives look at organisations from a financial perspective and consider budgetary rules and reforms, fiscal challenges, risk analysis etc. For those managing partnerships across sectors or working in areas where different policymaking bodies interact, the Intersectoral Management electives shed light on the politics of management.
Professional Development
The professional development area gives students the hands-on tools for day-to-day work. The skills courses offer training in negotiation, conflict management, consulting or motivating and leading teams. The Brussels workshop familiarises participants with the European decision-making process through meetings with high-level representatives from European institutions, trade and professional associations, NGOs and companies. The London workshop gives students a chance to look at Anglo-Saxon public management practices by examining the work of UK ministries, and to discern their applicability for continental European administrative cultures.
Master Thesis
Participants apply the theoretical knowledge they have learned to a topic directly related to their occupation. The Master Thesis is around 40 pages long and participants must present their work in a poster session.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 12 months
  • Study intensity Part-time, Full-time
    • Intensity Flexible
    • Duration part-time 24 months
    • Part-time variant
  • Credits
    60 ECTS
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
    • Time flexibility
      Fully structured
    • Attendance
      Regular mandatory meetings
    • Teacher support
      Continuous support with feedback on request
    • Student interaction
      Individual work/assignments (with online group discussions)
  • More information Go To The Course Website
Check Your Qualification
  • Enter your qualifications and directly see if a programme fits your profile

The following documents must be submitted:

  • Completed online application form
  • Current CV (in English or German; Europass CV recommended; CV should not exceed two pages in length)
  • Letter of motivation (in English or German, preferably in English, two pages or 900 words maximum), explaining your specific interest in public administration/management, the Executive MPA programme at the Hertie School of Governance, and how it relates to your professional aspiration.
  • Copies of official academic transcripts and diplomas of all attended universities. Every transcript must include a transcript key (an explanation of the grading system). If these documents are not in English or German, you will need to provide a certified/notarised translation into English or German. Hard copies are not required until after acceptance into the programme.
  • Two letters of reference (in English or German, or: a certified/notarised translation into English or German), of which at least one comes from the current or your last employer of the applicant. The other one can also be issued by a referee from academia. Applicants who undergo an annual performance evaluation by their employer can replace one of the reference letters with this document. The Hertie School may decide to contact the referee(s) to confirm the authenticity of the issued document(s).
    Reference letters can also be sent to us by the referee directly, either as an email attachment, or via regular mail.
    Reference letters should be on official letterhead (if applicable) and include an original signature. Contact details of all referees should be listed in the "References" section of the online application module. Reference letters can also be handed in after the application deadline.
    Reference letters are not requested from candidates nominated/dispatched by their employer after passing an internal selection process in their organisation.
  • English proficiency certificate (for non-native English speakers, if applicable)
Academic background

Applicants must have completed a higher education degree in any discipline - typically, Executive MPA students have a background in business/economics, law, social science or natural sciences.

Applicants must provide proof of at least 240 ECTS that have been acquired during previous studies (if no ECTS credits have been earned, a minimum of 3-4 years of previous academic studies are required). The recognition of credit points earned outside of a course of a study programme is incumbent upon the admission committee.

Professional background

The Executive MPA programme is aimed at professionals with at least two years of professional experience (most participants have a work experience of 5-15 years, the average is 10 years). We welcome applications from all sectors (public administration, the private sector as well as the non-profit-sector), as well as professionals who are either preparing a change of sector or are on a sabbatical or parental leave.

Language skills and required verification

As the language of instruction at the Hertie School of Governance is English, candidates must be fluent in English.

If a candidate is a native Speaker or if he/she can provide proof of a substantial work or study experience abroad, he/she may not have to provide a language test. Short-term study abroad, au-pair home stays or language school certificates will not be accepted as test replacements.

The Hertie School of Governance recognises the TOEFL and IELTS test as well as the Cambridge ESOL CPE and CAE tests.

Employees of the German Federal Government can also hand in an English test of the Federal Language Agency.

The Executive MPA admission requirements may be met by one of the following scores: TOEFL (PBT 577, CBT 233, IBT 90), IELTS (overall score of 7.0), Cambridge ESOL CPE (A, B, C) or CAE (A, B). Test results may not be more than five years old.

Candidates can submit their application to the Executive MPA programme, even if their language test is not yet available. However, please note that admission cannot be issued without proof of your language skills. We therefore advise all applicants to submit their results as early as possible.

Work Experience

At least 2 year(s) of work experience are required.

Tuition Fee Per Full Programme

  • EUR 29500 International
  • EUR 29500 EU/EEA

The tuition fee for the programme is € 29,500, regardless of whether it is completed in one or two years (2-year programme: € 7,375 per semester; 1-year programme: € 14,750 per semester).


External funding & loans
  • The Student Affairs team offers assistance in finding the right financial resources mix in the form of grants and loans. More information is available in the "External funding and loans" section. The newest addition to our financial aid portfolio are the Hertie School Education Funds that are based on the idea of the reversed generational contract.
Hertie School-sponsored scholarship
  • The Hertie School grants a limited number of tuition waivers (mostly reductions of the tuition fees) to a small number of excellent and motivated candidates.
Modular entry
  • A modular entry into the Executive MPA Programme is possible via the Executive Seminars and Certificates programme. All courses offered are Executive MPA seminars of 2-4 days each. Certificate participants select a certain academic focus and accomplish four courses (11 days in total) within a period of one or two years. There are no scholarships or reductions of the tuition for this programme, but credits earned can be recognised if a participant later starts with the Executive MPA (all tuition fees paid for seminars and certificates are offset against the EMPA tuition fees).
Support from employer
  • Many of our part-time Executive MPA participants receive some sort of support from their employer. This can be in the form of non-financial support, such as more flexibility or extra-leave, but also as financial support. Seminars and Certificates are very often supported by the employer as an integral part of continuing education.
Financing options for employees of the German higher civil service and for employees of Deutsche Bahn AG
  • Employees of the higher civil service ("höherer Dienst") working for German Federal Ministries and their subordinate agencies can be financially supported.
  • Employees of Deutsche Bahn Ag may also receive financial support for participating in the programme.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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