Comparative Social Policy and Welfare (COSOPO).

In cooperation with the University of Tampere (Finland) and the Mykolas Romeris University (Vilnius, Lithuania), the Johannes Kepler University Linz (Austria) offers a unique joint Master’s Degree program titled "Comparative Social Policy and Welfare (COSOPO)". The program is a unique opportunity to acquire expertise in social policy and welfare state research, qualifying you to conduct independent research, consulting and system development in an international context. The program provides a greater understanding of comparative research in social policy fields, welfare state systems, and welfare state theories.

Your Benefits

  • Expertise in European social policy and welfare States
  • Study programs abroad and international experience 
  • Advanced language skills
  • Interdisciplinary approach
  • Intercultural communication skills

Master's Degree in
Comparative Social Policy and Welfare


Master of Social Sciences (MSSc)


4 Semesters


120 Credits



Program Begins

Two-Year Cycle
Next Program: WS 2020/21
Application: March 2020

Program Objectives, Job Opportunities, Career Prospects


Graduates in the joint Master's degree program COSOPO acquire skills to independently conduct research, provide advising services and develop areas in the field of social policy. These skills include:

  • Openly engaging in critically examination of socio-political issues
  • Acquiring expertise and a strong understanding welfare state theory, models and fields
  • Comparatively analyzing policies on an international, European, and regional level
  • Qualifications in socio-academic methods and methodologies
  • Acquiring intercultural skills and competency to pursue international collaboration


  • Social research areas
  • Applied sciences
  • Austrian, European, international organizations and cooperative programs
  • Projects and programs in the field of social policy
  • NGO’s and non-profit organizations
  • Public services
  • Public relations


Recommended Study Plan

As part of the Master’s degree program, students are required to complete courses totaling 120 ECTS credits in the following areas:

Theoretical Approaches to Social Policy and Welfare x x    
National Systems of Welfare Production x x    
Empirical Research Methodology and Methods x x    
Research Areas of Social Policy   x x  
Internship     x  
Master's Thesis     x x

Additional Information

  • The COSOPO curriculum is flexible (e-learning and on-site classroom sessions), making it possible to study simultaneously at three distinguished universities (Mykolas Romeris University, University of Tampere, Johannes Kepler University) and without traveling long distances.
  • Two-week intensive programs at the partner universities at the start of the program
  • Students complete a subject-related internship
  • Short film about the Master's degree COSOPO (produced by MRU Vilnius)
  • For detailed information, please see: Institute of Politics and Social Policy

Admission Requirements

  • Diploma degree or Bachelor's degree in an area of Social Sciences, Economics or Business, or a comparable academic degree program
  • Strong background and knowledge of methods in social sciences
  • C1 Level proficiency in English ( such as a TOEFL/IELTS test)
  • Two-stage admission procedure:
    1. Substantive preliminary decision based on your application (Institute of Politics and Social Policy)
    2. Admission to Studies (Admissions Office)

Contact the Admissions Office for additional information about the admission requirements.

Still Have Questions?

Do you need help registering or do you have questions about the program? Contact the JKU's Office of Student Information and Academic Advising (SIBS)!