Career Perspectives

Students of the MA Science-Technology-Society

  • acquire the sensitivity to recognise the multi-dimensionality of current technoscientific challenges;
  • enhance their ability to approach complex problems both systematically and imaginatively;
  • gain the expertise to recognise the social and ethical dimensions of science and technology;
  • develop their capacity to position themselves in the face of necessarily complex and incomplete information;
  • learn to communicate issues related to science, technology and society.

These abilities prepare students for work in a range of different contexts at the interfaces of science, technology and society. The alumni of the programme are well trained to pursue an academic career in the context of PhD programmes in Austria and internationally. They will also find good employment opportunities in science communication, in national and international institutions specialised on funding, governing and managing research and technology, and in companies or NGOs, which need to take decisions related to science, technology and society in rapidly changing contexts.

STS Knowledge in practice

In this short video, Science Technology Society alumni speak about how they apply their expertise in professional practice. A longer version is available here.

Graduates' Opinion

"Following my studies in Science-Technology-Society (STS), I will attempt to move into an international organisation or an academic institution, perhaps one day attaining a professorial or management level position. I feel it is the responsibility of intellectuals to find pragmatic uses of academic knowledge in order to enhance the development of our societies.

The fundamentals of science and technology as a social practice as well as the particular attention devoted to risk communication will provide a solid base towards progress in these organisations. As such, knowledge I acquired within the STS master’s programme applies directly to my current position within the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), where I focus on the psychosocial consequences of the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Disaster. In particular, STS provides a means of stabilising government decisions during a nuclear emergency by increasing the ability to communicate important knowledge during a crisis. An affinity for science and technology and its burgeoning influence on our societies initially drew me to this programme, and I continue to feel that the impacts of science and technology require more investigation as their joint capacity grows.

Within the programme itself, I particularly enjoyed the small, intimate educational environment provided by the faculty. I found this allowed a greater degree of interaction and freedom between students and teachers alike; a rarity in higher education."

- Ryan Crowder, MA

"The master's programme Science-Technology-Society enabled me, through a number of high-quality seminars and lectures, to deal with the theoretical foundations and fundamental problems of the emerging field of Science and Technology Studies (STS) in a focused manner, providing an ideal basis for PhD studies abroad. Coming from the field of Communication and Media Studies, I found the focus on the relationship between technology and society thematically inspiring and important in terms of issues relating to democracy and governance.

Courses such as 'Grant Writing and Project Management' or 'Scientific Practice and Knowledge Management' introduce the key skills of our contemporary knowledge society. The master's programme not only conveys the fundamental 'tools' of modern knowledge work, which are also useful beyond the academic realm, but offers a superb introduction to a research field that is gaining more and more importance. Working within the scheduled time limit, dialogue ability and presentation skills are further qualifications that are supported and developed during the study programme. Furthermore, the international focus of this master’s programme taught entirely in English permitted me to refine my verbal and written skills in this language.

In my opinion, the study programme also stands out due to the following aspects: 1) dedicated teachers who prepare their lectures in an exemplary manner, give continuous feedback and show genuine interest in the intellectual and professional development of their students; 2) a fascinating interdisciplinary and international study and research environment for students and (visiting) professors alike; 3) a professional and motivating study and work setting which profits from a close interrelation of (top-level) research and teaching and enables a critical-reflexive engagement with complex sociotechnical and technoscientific topics."

- Gernot Rieder, Bakk.phil. BA MA