Executive Master of Public Administration

  • Executive
  • School of Public Policy
  • Application code L2UM
  • Starting 2024
  • Home full-time: Open
  • Overseas full-time: Open
  • Location: Houghton Street, London

Traditionally, you’d have to put your career on hold to study, but the LSE Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) helps busy professionals get a properly rigorous university degree while continuing to work. It’s a challenge. Balancing a busy work and academic life puts demands on your time, but the EMPA is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

The EMPA is taught over 22 months in intense blocks which develop your core skills in economics, policy evaluation and political science whilst demonstrating how these skills can be applied in a broad range of geographies and contexts. In addition to studying compulsory courses, you will also choose option courses to further customise your EMPA experience to meet your personal and professional needs.

When you study for the EMPA, you’ll interact with senior policy-making professionals and get to learn first-hand how they approached some of the most challenging policy issues of our time. You’ll also get the chance to deepen your own understanding of the subjects that matter to you and your organisation, and the modular format ensures you can apply your learning immediately.

Our high-calibre students come from a diverse range of backgrounds and nationalities. Since the programme started, we have taught students representing 71 different nationalities working in a wide range of private and public sector organisations. This ensures you will graduate with an impressive global network united by a passion for using public policy to improve people's lives. 

Above all, you’ll leave LSE with an evidence-based toolkit that you can rely on again and again to make the toughest decisions. Whether you’re self-funding or sponsored by an employer, that makes you highly valuable and well-positioned to drive your organisation to new levels of success.

The EMPA also benefits from sharing classes with the Executive Master of Public Policy programme (EMPP). The EMPP is open only to UK civil servants and is designed to train the organisation’s future leaders. The EMPP cohort is senior, experienced, and knowledgeable in contemporary public policy challenges.

Programme details

Key facts

Executive Master of Public Administration
Start date September 2024
Application deadline None – rolling admissions
Duration Taught over 22 months in modular blocks
Applications 2022 58
Intake 2022 30
Financial support This programme is not eligible for LSE financial support
Minimum entry requirement 2:1 degree or equivalent in any discipline, and a minimum of five years post-degree professional experience.
GRE/GMAT requirement None
English language requirements Higher (see 'Assessing your application')
Location  Houghton Street, London

For more information about tuition fees and entry requirements, see the fees and funding and assessing your application sections.

Entry requirements

Minimum entry requirements for Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA)

Upper second class honours (2:1) degree or equivalent in any discipline, and a minimum of five years post-degree professional experience.

Competition for places at the School is high. This means that even if you meet our minimum entry requirement, this does not guarantee you an offer of admission.

If you have studied or are studying outside of the UK then have a look at our Information for International Students to find out the entry requirements that apply to you.

If your qualifications or experience are slightly below the requirement, we would encourage you to contact the EMPA programme team at to discuss options. We can take into consideration mitigating factors for not meeting requirements, and compensating factors such as relevant professional experience and a candidate's potential.

Assessing your application

We welcome applications from all suitably qualified prospective students and we want to recruit students with the very best academic merit, potential and motivation, irrespective of their background.

We carefully consider each application on an individual basis, taking into account all the information presented on your application form, including your:

- academic achievement (including predicted and achieved grades)
- statement of purpose
- transcripts from prior degrees
- two references
- CV

See further information on supporting documents

You may also have to provide evidence of your English proficiency, although you do not need to provide this at the time of your application to LSE. See our English language requirements.

When to apply

Applications for this programme are considered on a rolling basis, meaning the programme will close once we have allocated all available space. There is no fixed deadline by which you need to apply. 

If you wish to discuss any aspect of the application process, please contact a member of the EMPA team at

Programme structure and courses

In total you will take eight  courses over a 22-month period. You will attend LSE for five week-long courses, as well as for a 3-day Introduction to Public Policy course, and two 3-day workshops on Policy in Practice. You will customise your learning experience by choosing two specialist modules from a range of options listed below.

You may also like to view the Department's webpages about this programme for further detail.

First year

(* denotes a half unit)

The EMPA does not require you to have a prior knowledge of economics or statistics. At the start of each intake, we deliver a 2-day Introduction to Statistics Workshop.

The workshop, which is not assessed, ensures that you are ready to undertake the EMPA by quickly and effectively bringing you up to the necessary level required to understand the concepts discussed in the courses that follow.

Introduction to Public Policy*
This introductory course provides you with the foundations for analysing key public policy questions. We will introduce how and why to study policy problems and solutions analytically and systematically. You’ll learn how to think about handling situations where there are competing interests and how incentives affect behaviour, and you’ll learn when markets deliver good outcomes and, more importantly, when they don’t, thus justifying intervention or regulation.

Political Science and Public Policy*
This core course introduces you to a range of theoretical and empirical tools to analyse the politics of policy-making. The main focus is on political institutions in modern democracies and how they relate to public policy. Topics include elections, representation, delegation, accountability, interest groups, legislatures, executives, and decentralisation.

Public Policy in Practice Workshop I*
This introductory workshop demonstrates how economists and political scientists approach policy challenges with the aim of encouraging you to start thinking like a social scientist.

Empirical Methods for Public Policy*
This core course introduces you to the quantitative evaluation of public policies. The focus is on practical applications of state-of-the-art empirical methods. The course begins with an overview of the key benefits of randomised experiments and then covers a number of other widely used approaches to determine the effectiveness of public policy interventions.

Economic Policy Analysis*
This core course covers both key microeconomic policy issues, such as externalities, public goods and principal-agent problems, and macroeconomic issues such as unemployment, fiscal and monetary policies, international trade and finance, and the determinants of long-run growth. The emphasis is on acquiring sound models and methods suitable for appraising policy-making issues in a wide variety of contexts.

Public Policy in Practice Workshop I*
This workshop applies the analytical tools that are taught in the week-long courses of the EMPA to specific policy areas using an innovative mix of academic thinking and senior practitioner insights.

Second year

Public Policy in Practice Workshop II*
This workshop applies the analytical tools that are taught in the week-long courses of the EMPA to specific policy areas using an innovative mix of academic thinking and senior practitioner insights.

In your second year you also choose two optioncourses, which allow you to specialise in policy areas of particular interest to you. You can also ‘audit’ a 3rd option course, that is fully participate but not submit assessment. Please note that ‘audit’ courses do not appear transcripts. An indicative list of option courses is listed below:

Global Market Economics*

Public Economics for Public Policy*

Regulatory Analysis*

Fiscal Governance and Budgeting*

Development Economics*

You can find the most up-to-date list of option courses in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note, however, that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will always notify the affected parties as early as practicably possible and propose any viable and relevant alternative options. Note that the School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to events outside of its control, which includes but is not limited to a lack of demand for a course or programme of study, industrial action, fire, flood or other environmental or physical damage to premises.

You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. Please note that changes to programmes and courses can sometimes occur after you have accepted your offer of a place. These changes are normally made in light of developments in the discipline or path-breaking research, or on the basis of student feedback. Changes can take the form of altered course content, teaching formats or assessment modes. Any such changes are intended to enhance the student learning experience. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the updated graduate course and programme information page.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods and assessment

This programme is taught over 22 months, in modular blocks. The unique teaching arrangements are designed specifically to be suitable for participants in full-time employment.

The teaching in the Policy in Practice workshops is based on a series of case studies that are taught by academic specialists in a particular policy area. They are complemented by presentations by senior policy practitioners involved in the policy area.

Study on campus will be complemented by preparatory readings, online revision material and support between modules including Zoom sessions and online office hours with highly qualified teaching fellows.

Courses are assessed by a combination of written assignments and exams. Assessments are submitted electronically from your location, which means that you do not have to return to LSE between modules.

You can view indicative details of hours, teaching staff, and assessment in the Calendar present in each course guide.

Academic support

There are many opportunities to extend your learning outside the classroom and complement your academic studies at LSE. LSE LIFE is the School’s centre for academic, personal and professional development. Some of the services on offer include: guidance and hands-on practice of the key skills you will need to do well at LSE: effective reading, academic writing and critical thinking; workshops related to how to adapt to new or difficult situations, including development of skills for leadership, study/work/life balance and preparing for the world of work; and advice and practice on working in study groups and on cross-cultural communication and teamwork.

LSE is committed to enabling all students to achieve their full potential and the School’s Disability and Wellbeing Service provides a free, confidential service to all LSE students and is a first point of contact for all disabled students.


The EMPA is a transformational programme that provides skills and knowledge to enhance your career prospects and options in the area of public policy. EMPA alumni occupy leading positions in a wide range of public and private sector organisations around the world including governments, international organisations, major consultancies, financial services companies, charities and think tanks.  

Visit the EMPA student directory to find out about our current cohort of students. 

Career support and professional development 

EMPA students receive customised support appropriate for more experienced professionals including events specifically for experienced hires, a programme of one-to-one executive coaching, and a ‘soft’ skills development programme.  

In addition to custom careers support EMPA students can access the resources of the central LSE Careers service.  Many leading organisations give careers presentations at the LSE during the year, and LSE Careers has a wide range of resources available to assist students in their job search. Find out more about the support available to students through LSE Careers

Student stories

Since the EMPA started in 2013, the programme has recruited experienced working professionals representing 71 different nationalities, working across a wide range of public and private sector organisations. This professional experience and cultural and geographical diversity both enriches the learning experience and ensures that you will graduate with an impressive global network united by a passion for using public policy to improve people's lives. The following are just a sample of EMPA alumni stories.

For more EMPA alumni profiles visit the SPP Alumni in Action page

Dina Kamal

Dina Kamal
Executive Master of Public Administration 2015
Partner at Deloitte

“Even with a prior MBA, this degree certainly challenged my thinking and allowed me to have a more diverse view of the world. In my current role as a partner in Deloitte, I am able to leverage a lot of the learning in my day to day job in ways I sometimes didn't expect, such as evaluating the impact of programs and projects”.

See Dina’s full story

Marcel Fukayama

Marcel Fukayama
Executive Master of Public Administration 2017
Head of Global Policy, B Lab 

Co-Founder, Din4mo

Member of the Advisory Council - The Sustainable Social Economic Development Council (CDESS) – for the Brazilian Presidency

Before joining the SPP I had designed, implemented, and managed solutions to promote social change for fifteen years. So, when I visited the LSE campus and saw the school's motto 'Rerum cognoscere causas' - to understand the cause of things - it seemed like a friendly environment to develop my next level of impact as an entrepreneur.

See full Marcel’s full story


Samir Khan
Executive Master of Public Administration 2017
Director of Research, GivingTuesday

“While there were other options in terms of public policy degrees, the EMPA offered the right combination of rigour, flexibility, and exposure to international networks of academics and fellow students. As I said earlier, a Masters is a huge investment, and you want to make sure your getting new skills, but also access to new networks and opportunities”.

See Samir’s full story

Lola Talabi-Oni

Lola Talabi-Oni
Executive Master of Public Administration 2019
Special Advisor for Data Coordination, Lagos State Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget

“The opportunity to learn and network with an accomplished cohort of EMPA course mates, in a city as cosmopolitan and vibrant as London and with access to the LSE alumni, was hard to beat!”

See Lola’s full story

Rai Sow

Rai Sow
Executive Master of Public Administration 2022
Executive Director at Make Every Woman Count

“Aside from the learning, my favourite thing about the EMPA would be the fantastic people I have met throughout the course. My cohort, with some of whom I have remained good friends, and the team behind the programme with their kindness and support”. 

See Rai’s full story

Class profile (2023 intake)

  • Gender: Male 59%, Female 41%
  • Age range: 25 – 55
  • Average age: 37
  • Average professional experience: 12 years
  • Nationalities represented: 71 (2013 – 2023 intakes)

For a more detailed profile visit the EMPA webpages.

Fees and funding

Every graduate student is charged a fee for their programme.

The fee covers registration and examination fees payable to the School, lectures, classes and individual supervision, lectures given at other colleges under intercollegiate arrangements and, under current arrangements, membership of the Students' Union. It does not cover living costs, travel or fieldwork.

Tuition fees 2024/25 for Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA)

Home students, first year: £19,410 (2024/25)
Overseas students, first year: £19,410 (2024/25)
Home students, second year: £19,410 (2025/26)
Overseas students, second year: £19,410 (2025/26)

Fees can be paid in 3 instalments per academic year.

The Table of Fees shows the latest tuition amounts for all programmes offered by the School.

Fee status

For this programme, the tuition fee is the same for all students regardless of their fee status.

Scholarships and other funding

This programme is not eligible for LSE financial support.

Government tuition fee loans and external funding

A postgraduate loan is available from the UK government for eligible students studying for a first master’s programme, to help with fees and living costs. Some other governments and organisations also offer tuition fee loan schemes.

Find out more about tuition fee loans

Further information

Fees and funding opportunities

Contact us

Programme and admissions enquiries

A member of the EMPA team will be happy to talk to you about the programme's benefits and challenges. If this is of interest, please contact We can also provide advice on suitability for the programme if you share a copy of your CV. Finally, we would also be happy to put you in contact with an EMPA alumnus to get a 'student' perspective on the programme.

To learn more about the Executive MPA, visit the EMPA programme page in the Department's website.

If you have any queries related to your application or the admissions process, you may also wish to check the EMPA frequently asked questions webpage.

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