Dual Degree MS - IPE - Prospective Students

Interested in how Economics affects Politics? Intrigued by the possibility to study abroad? Excited about the possibility to obtain two Masters degrees for the price of one? Click below to learn more about

What is the MSc IPE?

What is IPE?

Political Economy analyzes how Economics affects Politics, and how Politics affects Economics. International Political Economy (IPE) examines political economy issues in an international context. For example, IPE questions include the following: Why do some countries erect trade barriers to protect domestic companies while others do not? Why do some actors take up arms and organize a rebellion while others pursue peaceful means to resolve economic conflicts? Why do some African governments borrow from China while others do not, and what implications do these loans have for democracy and growth?

What is the MSc IPE?

The MSc IPE is an interdisciplinary study program that combines various components from economics and political science. Currently, Economics and Political Science appear as rather distinct social sciences. This is unfortunate, as the most pressing problems societies face today need answers that require both economic expertise and political skill. This program addresses this shortcoming. Graduates will be well prepared to tackle the big questions of our time. The MSc IPE is a modern degree for modern challenges.

What is the plan of the program?

Up to ten students are admitted both in Dallas and Marburg each year. After studying one year at the university where you were admitted, you then move on to the respective partner university for the second year of their studies. Thus, on the one hand, you get to know different university cultures and teaching approaches. On the other hand, spending one year in Germany and one year in the US gives you the opportunity to experience international differences in terms of politics, economics, social processes, and culture.

Language of Instruction?

The language of the IPE program is English. The courses and seminars will be carried out in English, examinations will be conducted in English, and the Master’s thesis must be submitted in English.

Program structure?

Students Starting at the University of Texas at Dallas:

Students Starting at the University of Marburg:

The Team

UT Dallas University of Marburg
  • Clint Peinhardt: Examines the intersection of international politics, economics, and law. His research investigates the causes and consequences of Bilateral Investment Treaties (BITs)
  • Jennifer Holmes: Analyzes political violence, terrorism, and political development. She is an expert on Latin America, especially Colombia and Peru.
  • Jonas Bunte: Studies the Politics of Finance. For example, his research investigates the motivations and effects of government-to-government loans on economic development.
  • Others: See our full faculty list at http://www.utdallas.edu/epps/public-policy-and-political-economy/faculty.html

Our Partners

We cooperate with a variety of partners in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, such as:

Why study the MSc IPE?

Interdisciplinary Studies

The MSc in International Political Economy is a truly interdisciplinary degree. It combines the analytical strength of economics with global insights from political science. You will acquire the knowledge and skills expected of an economist and, at the same time, gain expertise in international relations, issues of development, security, and international policy. Methodologically, the program provides training in quantitative as well as qualitative research methods. This offers the opportunity to combine theory development and empirical analysis. The MSc IPE involves two departments (Political Science and Economics) at two different universities (UT Dallas and University of Marburg) in two different countries (United States and Germany), yet offers one tightly integrated program.

Living Abroad

The joint degree requires you to live abroad for at least one year. If you start your studies in the United States, you will be studying in Germany your second year. However, you do not need to be fluent in German to successfully complete the degree: All classes --- even those in Germany --- are offered in English. Conversely, if you start your studies in Germany, your second year of studies will be in Dallas.

Both cities have a lot to offer:

  • Marburg is a beautiful town. Its historical city center is 800 years old. The University of Marburg itself was founded in 1527, providing a Harry-Potter-like experience. Above the city towers a beautiful castle, called the landgrave's castle. The city is home to a variety of coffee shops, pubs, and bars, facilitating a vibrant student life. Marburg was not bombed during World War II and so the medieval city center is still characterized by traditional half-timber houses. There is plenty of nature to explore as well: The river Lahn flows through the valley and can be explored by boat and offers plenty of hiking opportunities.
  • Similarly, the city of Dallas offers many attractions, but a very different experience. The city's prominence arose from its historical importance as a center for the oil and cotton industries. Thanks to these roots, today Dallas is an economic powerhouse with one of the most dynamic regional economies in the United States. For example, it is home to the third-largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the nation. As a consequence, its importance as a cultural and sports metropolis has risen. For example, Dallas offers multiple world-class museums, a symphonic orchestra, and sports teams such as Dirk Nowitzki's Dallas Mavericks or the Dallas Cowboys.

Costs vs. Benefits

We recognize that students want maximum benefits for their investment into education. We designed our program with these considerations in mind. Most importantly, the MSc IPE is a dual-degree program that offers double benefits in two dimensions: First, for the price of one masters degree, you will receive two separate MSc degrees — one from UT Dallas and another from the University of Marburg. Second, you will be able to obtain these two masters degrees in the time it typically takes to obtain a single degree.

Professional experience

Students writing their Masters Thesis in Dallas can present their research at a Research Symposium, jointly organized with the Dallas Goethe Center. This event provides the opportunity to engage in academic debates with other scholars and practitioners based in Dallas. Furthermore, it offers the possibility to engage with the local business community, which might open doors to subsequent internships and job opportunities.

Future careers

The MSc IPE opens doors to a variety of careers in economic analysis or business. You can apply to a wide variety of national and international organizations or corporations. Typical private-sector jobs are related to risk analysis, imports and exports, or multinational corporations. Work in the national government sector can include ministries such as Foreign Affairs, Economics, or Development. You can also apply to international organizations (e.g., United Nations, World Bank, etc.) or nongovernment organizations (NGOs and Think Tanks). Alternatively, you can pursue an academic career by studying towards a PhD.

How to apply?

Requirements for admission

  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 (dual degree candidates must maintain a 3.5 in the program to be considered to continue on to Marburg)
  • Proof of English Proficiency (TOEFL or other documentation)
  • An undergraduate degree in political science, economics, or other relevant disciplines
  • The Dual Degree MSc IPE can only be pursued as a full-time degree; part-time study is not possible
  • GRE: Verbal score of 156 and quantitative score of 146
  • Follow university deadlines: http://www.utdallas.edu/admissions/graduate/steps-to-admission/fees-and-deadlines/

Application process

  • Complete the application on the UTD website http://www.utdallas.edu/admissions/graduate/
  • Have official transcripts from all universities you have attended sent from those universities to the Office of Admissions
  • Complete a short essay with an explanation of why you feel you would be successful in the program
  • Request three recommendation letters from professors, employers or those people who would be knowledgeable about your abilities
  • Send your GRE and TOEFL scores (If applicable)
  • Students being considered for the dual degree will be contacted for a short telephone or Skype interview
  • We will work with Marburg on final selection of candidates


Note that you will have to pay UTD tuition fees both when studying in Dallas as well as in Marburg. There is no additional tuition in Marburg. For further information concerning possible scholarship and funding opportunities, click here.

Contact and questions

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

  • For substantive questions:
    Jennifer Holmes
    Professor and Head of Department
    [email protected] +1 (972) 883-6843
  • Postal Address:
    800 W Campbell Road
    Richardson TX 75080-3021