Master's Programme in International Design Business Management - M.Sc. Degree in Technology


Master of Science (Technology).
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120 ECTS

Field of Study:

Technology and Engineering


2 years, full-time


An appropriate Bachelor´s degree or an equivalent qualification.

Tuition fees & scholarships:

Yes, for non-EU citizens.
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Language of Instruction:

More information.

Organising school/s:

School of Science

Application period:

2016-12-15 - 2017-01-25

Publication of Results:


Further information:

International Design Business Management Aalto University

The purpose of the IDBM program is to develop world-class expertise in global design business management through multidisciplinary research and learning that cuts across the areas of business, design and technology.

The application period for the September 2017 intake has ended. The application period for the September 2018 intake takes place in December-January, with the exact dates to be confirmed later. The websites of the study options offered will be updated for the next application round in August.

The International Design Business Management (IDBM) programme is a joint teaching and research platform of the three Aalto University schools: the School of Business, the School of Art, Design and Architecture, and the School of Science.

The programme is intended for all students with interest in interdisciplinary work, design driven innovation, creative business models and product development.

The purpose of the IDBM programme is to develop world-class expertise in global design business management through multidisciplinary research and learning that cuts across the areas of business, design and technology. The IDBM programme aims to train skilled professionals for key roles in global design business.

The programme emphasises the importance of design as a competitive factor, linked with state-of-the-art technology and business models.

Study programme

All master students from the three tracks (Arts, Technology, Business) will study the same compulsory IDBM courses during the first year of studies. At the core of the program is the Industry Project, lasting a full academic year, where multidisciplinary student teams work together on real-life challenges provided by industry partners

The programme gives future marketers, engineering experts and designers an opportunity to practice important interpersonal skills through cooperative industry projects and specialised courses. The programme builds on the business, design or technology skills and competence achieved at the bachelor’s level, enabling students to make full use of their own potential as members of interdisciplinary teams, often within project-based work.

See further information on the course content from the programme website ( and Study Guide 2016-2017 for M.Sc.(Tech.) studies in IDBM (

Career opportunities

IDBM studies prepare for work in the creative industries and in businesses that use and manage creativity as a key component of their competitive positioning. On one hand this can involve very large multinational corporations, and on the other hand, small start-ups, operating in a variety of fields. These businesses typically engage design to create new products and services, often involving the latest technology and business venturing and entrepreneurship.

The tasks that graduates undertake typically involve doing and managing design, product, service and business development, consulting, intra- and entrepreneurial initiatives and research. The initial specialist roles usually evolve into managerial ones over time.

During studies, the departments involved may offer the best students summer job/research assistant positions. Aalto University Career Services provides information on employers, job and thesis opportunities, and hints for job hunting for all Aalto students.

Tuition fees and scholarships

Non-EU/EEA students selected to the IDBM programme in the application round 2017 will be charged tuition fees. Further information on the tuition fees and scholarships offered can be found here.

Admission requirements

Admission to the IDBM programme is granted through three different fields depending on the applicant's background and the targeted degree:

Please note that applicants holding the Bachelor's degree in Architecture can apply both through science and tehnology admission or through art and design admission depending on their background studies and career intention.

General admission requirements in the field of science and technology

The general eligibility requirements are the same for all Master's programmes in the field of science and technology. Please see also the requirements concerning language skills.

Eligible applications are then sent to the academic evaluation described in more detail below.

Programme-specific requirements and evaluation criteria

To be considered for admission, the applicant must fulfill the minimum requirements for the studies leading to a in Technology. The minimum requirements include good academic performance and previous studies compatible with the degree studies.

The previous degree is usually considered compatible, if it was completed in the field of technology (including industrial engineering and management). The compatibility of the previous studies depends on the content of the bachelor’s degree of the student. Generally, an applicant’s previous studies are considered compatible if they include

  • basic studies in mathematics and natural sciences, and
  • a minor subject or a comparable study entity based on the aforementioned basic studies from a technical field (other than industrial engineering and management) or from a field clearly related to mathematics or natural sciences.

The applicant's degree certificate must clearly state both of these study entities.

If the minimum requirements (good academic performance, compatibility of previous studies) are not met, the evaluation will not be continued.

The applicants are ranked in two phases on the basis of the following criteria (max 12 points).

Phase I

1) Motivation (max 5 points)
Applicant must show his/her motivation for studying in the IDBM programme by writing a letter of motivation. The letter should be 1-2 pages long and it should answer at least the following questions:

  • Why am I applying for admission in the IDBM programme?
  • What am I expecting to learn or gain by participating in the IDBM programme?
  • The contribution I will bring to fellow students and to the continued success of the IDBM programme?

2) Academic Excellence (max 5 points)
Applicant’s grades from studies completed and of which the applicant has provided the appropriate documents by the end of the application period will be evaluated and scored.

3) Professional Experience (max 2 points)
Applicant’s professional experience is looked at broadly and is considered to include work experience relevant to the IDBM programme as well as experience in scientific and artistic work, entrepreneurship and /or other relevant civic activity. Professional experience will be evaluated based on the CV.

Phase II

Based on the total scores of Phase I, the best applicants are interviewed. The maximum number of applicants invited to the interview is double the amount of the quota. The applicants’ practical skills and ability to communicate in English are evaluated and the applicants are required to give a short oral presentation in English on a subject given when invited to the interview. The interviews can be conducted by phone or Skype if necessary.

The final acceptance of applicants will be made on the basis of the interviews. The student can be admitted only for one Master’s Degree Programme in International Design Business Management.

Application documents

The compulsory application documents  in the field of science and technology are listed here.

Contact information

Coordination: Aalto University School of Business, Töölö Campus, Helsinki. Note that learning activities take place on all Aalto University campuses.


  • For enquiries regarding the application process in the field of science and technology, application documents and language requirements, please read instructions first. If you cannot find an answer to your question, contact Aalto University Admission Services at admissions [at] aalto [dot] fi.
  • For enquiries regarding the contents of studies in the IDBM programme in the field of science and technology, please contact Master Admissions at the School of Science at masters-sci [at] aalto [dot] fi.

Page content by: | Last updated: 04.05.2017.