Master Food, Culture and Territory (online)

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) | Barcelona, Spain
The programme identifies social processes that link food to people and places. It is designed for those interested in learning, whether professionals or those making first steps in their career. All our students share an interest in food, territory, heritage and local development.

Description of Food, Culture and Territory


Food is one of the richest aspects of cultures and societies. Food is increasingly seen as something far greater than its simple quotidian nature, becoming a vehicle for local promotion and development, linked to understandings of economies which, despite being immersed in global processes, are still local and regional.

From this basic premise, food should be understood as a transversal element affecting all aspects and stages of life. These components are intimately linked to territory, local identity, development and heritage.

The Master's Degree in Food, Culture and Territory explores and develops these points of connection from an international and interdisciplinary perspective. It presents a multidimensional experience in terms of the learning environment, interactions and materials.

The programme identifies social processes that link food to people and places. It is designed for those interested in learning, whether professionals or those making first steps in their career. All our students share an interest in food, territory, heritage and local development.

The programme attracts those who want to work and specialise in the food sector or those who want to improve their knowledge and skills in order to improve their professional prospects.

The course is designed in particular for:

  • those working in the food, drink and agriculture sector;
  • social scientists;
  • public administrators;
  • cultural and heritage managers;
  • journalists specialising in food;
  • professional organisations, NGOs or international cooperation projects dealing
  • with issues relating to food and agriculture, and
  • students looking for further education in agro-food subjects.

Detailed Course Facts

Tuition fee
  • EUR 3000 Year (Non-EEA)
  • EUR 3000 Year (EEA)
Start date October  2015
Credits (ECTS) 60 ECTS
Duration full-time 24 months
  • English
Take an IELTS test
Delivery mode Online
Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

The Master's in Food, Culture and Territory is made up of two mandatory specialisations, two elective specialisations and a final research project.

The two mandatory specialisations are:

  • Food and Society The Specialisation in Food and Society proposes an interdisciplinary exploration of the role that food plays in society and the role society and culture play in shaping food choices. The way we produce and eat food has shifted rapidly over the last century, spurred on by new technologies, industrialisation, urbanisation and globalisation. But some things remain the same: food is one of the first essentials of life, the world's largest industry, a frequently indulged pleasure and is often at the core of our social relationships.
    Focus in this specialisation is on the role that food plays in our communities and societies, how we are influenced and impacted by food and in turn, how food is impacted by us.
  • Geographic Indication In this course, students consider the socio, cultural and political implications of geographic indication. Geographic indication (GI) protects local products and provides interesting marketing strategies, but they also run the risk of restricting and limiting change. Students review the history of GIs and use case studies to consider the benefits and limitations of this type of certification. We then turn our attention of tourism and GIs, focusing on the importance of geographic indicators for tourist destinations and vice versa. Here we will examine specific cases, including Wine tourism in Napa Valley (California) and the Oleoturism Olive Oil Route (Jaén, Spain).
    Finally, we consider the legal considerations of geographical indicators including definitions, GIs as a form of intellectual property and a review of legal frameworks that govern GIs.

You may then select two from:

  • Food and Migration Innately biological and fundamentally social and cultural, food is like no other aspect of life: it straddles nature and culture and is intimately tied to place while increasingly distributed around the world. When people move or are displaced, their relation to food inevitably shifts. Indeed, migration processes lead individuals to redefine their food culture in foreign social contexts, bringing into play a transformation of dietary behaviour and nutritional aspects associated with these changes, as well as challenges, such as difficulties attaining specific products from one's place of origin.
    The Specialisation in Food and Migration offers an interdisciplinary approach to analysing the relationship between food and international migration. The goal of this specialisation is to address food processes related to migration from a social and cultural context while focussing on nutrition and diet.
  • Community-Based Food Markets This Specialisation in Community-Based Food Markets proposes a specific and in-depth exploration of the role of food markets in societies and local cultures. Community-based food markets (e.g., farmer's markets) play a central role in local and regional food trade and have also become spaces of social relations, cultural and personal expression, economic activity and enhancement and connection with territory.
    The focus of this master's level specialisation is to observe the role played by these commercial spaces in feeding our communities and societies. It thus offers a broad view and understanding of the phenomenon that impact markets as well as small businesses and pays particular attention to practical and technical aspects of management.
  • Mediterranean Food and Diet For several decades, the Mediterranean diet has been studied and generally praised as a healthy nutrition-pattern based on some of the dietary heritage of Mediterranean peoples. More recently, increased medical, social and institutional awareness and interest has led to the widespread adoption of these dietary guidelines. Also, an application for the "Mediterranean Diet" as intangible heritage of humanity has been submitted to UNESCO.
    This master's level Specialisation in Mediterranean Food and Diet offers a holistic and interdisciplinary approach to an analysis of regionally-based food arrangements which not only define a particular dietary pattern characteristic of the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea, but also extends to lifestyle. Therefore, this course considers broad and comprehensive phenomenon that affects medicine, nutrition, and the culture and lifestyles of individuals.

To review the course content of the specialisations that make up the Master's in Food, Culture and Territory and when these specialisations are offered, please visit the specific programme pages.

Requirements for Food, Culture and Territory

The Master's in Food, Culture and Territory is open to everyone with a good grasp of English.

The UOC is an open university which means that even if you do not have a high school diploma or university degree you can still take our courses.

However, to be eligible for the Master's Degree you must have a recognised university degree. If you do not have a recognised university degree then you will receive an equivalent certificate instead of a degree.

Prior knowledge

The course materials and teaching language is English. A strong grasp of English is required for this programme.


Once the overall assessment process has been successfully completed, the UOC will issue 60 ECTS credits and a Master's in Food, Culture and Territory to those participants with an accredited university qualification that is valid in Spain.

Should you not have such a qualification, a Food, Culture and Territory Certificate will be issued.
*ECTS refers to the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System. The UOC is a fully accredited university and our courses are part of the ECTS.

Work Experience for Food, Culture and Territory

No work experience is required.

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Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), Spain

Spain The UOC is an online university born from the knowledge society and whose mission is to provide people with lifelong learning and education. The UOC is a leader and innovator in education and technology, and is a benchmark for quality in its academic work and research in e-learning based on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).