Educational programmes

Our courses, including theses and internships, can be followed separately, or as structured part of various educational programmes.

Here you can find more information about the various educational programmes, theses and internships to which CPT contributes.

If you have any questions, please contact our education coordinators at education.cpt@wur.nl

Management, Economics and Consumer Studies

If you are interested in consumer behaviour, understanding communication is essential. Companies constantly communicate with consumers: through marketing, but also for example web care. In addition, consumers also communicate amongst themselves. Not only in their role of consumer, but also as citizens. Moreover, there are societal pressure groups (e.g. animal welfare organisations) who use communication to influence people’s opinions, images and consumption patterns.

With CPT you can learn to understand how people’s perceptions about products and organisations are formed and utilized in networks of communication, and how this shapes societal outcomes. We also offer room for ethical reflection on both consumption and the use of persuasive and other communication strategies to influencing behaviour.

BSc Management, Economics and Consumer Studies
MSc Management, Economics and Consumer Studies

Communication Sciences

Communicative processes have become a major force in the 21st century. Public organisations, commercial companies, citizens and pressure groups all use a variety of media and communication strategies to make their voices heard, to exert influence on others, and to stimulate or block change. And in this context, life-scientists aim to contribute to solving complex challenges such as climate change, water and energy scarcity, poverty and obesity. However, their insights and proposed solutions are frequently subject to heated debate in society. This indicates that addressing problems in life-science domains requires more than information provision and behaviour change campaigns. We also need high quality deliberation, dialogue and reflection.

At CPT, you learn about the different roles that communication and science may play in society, and how to build bridges between people with different backgrounds and interests.

BSc Communicatie en Life Sciences
MSc Applied Communication Science

Health and Society

The complex health system asks for innovative solutions. Many different parties are involved: citizens, medical professionals, the government, health insurers, etc. Parties involved do not always agree with each other and people don’t change their behaviour easily. How to make sure that technical innovations are picked up by the people they were created for? Why don’t people always make the decisions they know are good for their health? What processes hinder effective communication between health professionals and patients, or between different experts in hospitals?

CPT courses offer insight in how people talk about health and risks and how they make decisions. You can also learn how to design persuasive health campaigns, how to facilitate dialogue, or how to connect the world of science with the world of practice. In addition, courses foster reflection on ethical dilemmas in health promotion and medical work.

BSc Gezondheid en Maatschappij
Health and Society Specialisation

International Development Studies

The current globalised world poses important challenges such as poverty, migration, food security, environmental degradation, and unequal access to resources and development opportunities. While rapid advances in science and technology are widely regarded as key to addressing such problems, their application in society often has a bright and a dark side. Scientific knowledge can help solve problems, but it may also exacerbate existing inequalities or trigger new tensions. Moreover, many innovative solutions that are introduced by scientists or development practitioners, are never implemented because they do not fit the social or ecological context in which they are promoted. This raises questions about how communication may be used in the process of developing social and technical innovations with relevant communities, rather than as a strategy to sell externally developed ideas.

In CPT courses you learn how science and technology shape and transform agro-food networks, livelihoods and the environment (and vice versa) to how innovation and development processes may become more inclusive, responsible and democratic.

BSc Internationale Ontwikkelingsstudies
MSc International Development Studies

Environmental Sciences

Planet Earth’s population of seven billion people on earth poses an enormous challenge. How can we keep our environment healthy? For finding innovative methods and sustainable solutions to the threats facing the environment we need to combine the natural, technological and social sciences. However, initiatives to introduce new environmentally friendly technologies and production systems are often confronted with resistance by dominant players and coalitions who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo. How can we deal with this? How can communication and innovation processes be organised to leverage change at the level of individuals and collectives?

CPT offers courses in which you learn about the dynamics of social and technical change, and the roles that communication and ethical deliberation may play in fostering responsible research and innovation. This includes insight on how to build bridges between people with different backgrounds and interests, and how to connect the natural, technological and social world.

BSc Milieuwetenschappen
MSc Environmental Sciences

Tourism

The societal importance of the tourism phenomenon has grown significantly in recent decades and its contribution to the global economy is well documented. But tourism is also closely linked to major global changes in culture, politics, technology and the environment. How does tourism affect the quality of life and well-being of individuals and regions? What is its role in community, regional and urban development? In what way do tourist activities affect the environment of travel destinations and influence cultures worldwide? What is the relation with global transformations such as changing consumer behaviour, economic developments, climate change, epidemics, or acts of terrorism?

CPT offers courses that give you insight in how tourism organisations may stay in tune with their ever changing environment, and in the processes at work in cross-cultural communication. In addition, courses offer space to reflect on the ethical dimensions of international tourism.

BSc Tourism

Nutrition and Health

Every day, people encounter an enormous amount of information about the health aspects of foods and dietary patterns. TV, friends, magazines and diet bestsellers tell us what we should and shouldn’t eat, often containing information that seems to be contradictory (think for example of carbohydrates and superfoods). Many people struggle with questions such as ‘What is healthy food?’ ‘How can I eat healthy?’ and ‘How to resist the temptation of unhealthy food?’

CPT offers opportunities to answer these questions and offers courses that teach you how to understand how people make decisions, how the social environment influences food choice, how people perceive risks, how to design persuasive health campaigns, and what are ethical problems in relation to nutrition and health.

BSc Voeding en Gezondheid
MSc Nutrition and Health

Development and Rural Innovation

Development challenges such as climate change, lack of clean drinking water, spreading of diseases or degradation of natural resources cannot be solved by technology alone. Addressing such challenges also requires changes in the social world: for example new forms of organisation and collective action, new policies, and new rules and incentive systems. This implies that analysis of development challenges requires integration of knowledge and insights from natural and social science disciplines, as well as recognition of stakeholder perspectives. Such integration is not easily achieved, but requires careful facilitation based on thorough understanding of the dynamics of inter-human processes and communication.

CPT courses offer insight in such processes, and also enhance more general understanding of how technology changes society and how society shapes technology development. In addition, our courses offer insight in different intervention models, design approaches and institutional set-ups relevant to supporting social and technical innovation.

MSc Development and Rural Innovation

Organic Agriculture

We study agriculture as ‘something that people do and make’, individually or organised in a group, often – but not always - with the use of tools and machines. In CPT we like you to explore if such an angle to agriculture makes you think differently about agriculture, researchers and farmers, the market and the consumers. How can we bridge the gap between laboratories, experimental fields, farmers’ fields, markets and policy arenas? And how do those activities feed society? Many agricultural and food topics are related with (fair-trade) markets, consumers and communication.


CPT offers a variety of courses that can help you to explore broader questions you have about the role of organic agriculture in this world, and what you can contribute. You can also find topics around the ethics of (organic) agriculture and food consumption and on how qualitative research (like interviewing researchers, farmers, consumers and other actors in society) can become part of your MSc research project.

MSc Organic Agriculture

Life Sciences

For finding innovative methods and sustainable solutions to the life science challenges in the world, we need to combine the natural, technological and social sciences.

That is not so easy, because parties involved do not always agree with each other and people don’t easily change their behaviour.

How can we bridge the gap between laboratories, experimental fields, farmers fields, markets and policy arenas, in short: how can we connect the world of science with the world of practice? How can we facilitate constructive dialogues between people with different backgrounds and interests?

CPT offers courses that teach you how to connect the natural, technological and social world. You can also find topics around ethical dilemmas and on how qualitative research (like interviewing researchers, farmers, consumers and other actors in society) can become part of your MSc research project.