Specialisation Health Society

Specialisation Health and Society

If you are interested in solving societally relevant, complex health issues, then Wageningen is the place to be! In the specialisation Health and Society students become context-sensitive experts in the domains of science and health promotion.

Health and Society studies the social and behavioural aspects of health and health promotion, but also other factors that affect health, for instance the organisation of the food system and the interaction between individuals and the physical environment.

About Health and Society

For many centuries, the care for individuals and population health has been the domain of medical science. However, it is widely acknowledged that contemporary health problems are complex and cannot be solved only by hospitals and medical doctors. Many diseases are related to lifestyles, the social and physical environment, access to information and the opportunities for making healthy choices.

The specialisation Health and Society takes a comparative perspective with respect to the empowerment of individuals, communities and populations. In other words, the degree to which people have (financial) means to arrange their lives and the extent to which they can use resources for health protection and health improvement. In that way emphasis is on the social embedding of health and activities of health promotion. The comparative perspective translates into a geographical orientation on differences between developed and developing countries. This geographical orientation is motivated by the fact that issues of social justice, a fundamental principle in health promotion, often relate to inequalities and inequities between regions.


For timetables, courses and course content of the specialisation Health and Society and the common part of the master you can read the Study Handbook.

Career prospects

Graduates of this specialisation work for governments, health care institutes or arbo services. Alumni work in national or international organisations, like the Red Cross, Oxfam Novib, or patient associations, research institutes, insurers or health-promoting institutes. Visit future career for the stories and career paths of alumni.