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Entry requirements

A second-class honours degree (2:2 or above) in social sciences or humanities.

Applications are reviewed on their individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

Months of entry

October

Course content

Over the past few decades, questions about the production, supply, preparation, consumption and disposal of food have become central to our understanding of society and politics. With the rise of a global food market and of industrial agriculture - and the accompanying challenges of climate change, soil erosion and food scarcity - it is more urgent than ever to understand the complex interrelationship between food, politics and society.

Birkbeck's MSc Food, Politics and Society offers a comprehensive survey of the main themes in this area. You will study the theoretical background and real-world impact of key issues, including agricultural production, the sociology of consumption, food and the city, and the political ecology of our contemporary industrialised global food system. You will also explore the historical, sociological and political dimensions of nutrition and malnutrition, the regulation of food markets, struggles and conflict over food, and the cultural meanings of food.

The degree draws primarily from the field of food studies, but it is interdisciplinary and you will study approaches, ideas and texts from politics, theory, history, sociology, cultural anthropology and public policy.

This degree will be of interest to anybody working in, or planning to pursue a career in, food politics and food policy who wants to build their skills and knowledge to enhance their career prospects. It is also suitable if you want to undertake MPhil/PhD or professional research.

Highlights
  • This course offers a unique approach to the study of food studies, food politics and food policy.
  • You can follow your own interests, by choosing from a wide range of option modules, while also developing your research skills and undertaking a dissertation in an area that interests you.
  • Our Department of Politics is a world-renowned centre of original, influential research. In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), Politics at Birkbeck was ranked 17th in the UK.
  • Our academic staff are international authorities in their respective fields, publishing and delivering stimulating teaching in a wide range of political topics including civil society and the state, public policy, development, gender, international security and terrorism, and social and political theory, among others. Watch a debate they had on the recent pandemic and its effects on food, politics and society.
  • The Department organises a lively programme of seminars and conferences and is home to affiliated research centres, such as the Birkbeck Centre for British Political Life, which run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world's best scholars present their latest research.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Name
Student Advice Service
Email
studentadvice@bbk.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)20 3907 0700