Master's Programme in Water Engineering

120 credits

Access to clean water is a cornerstone of modern society, and the water engineer has a central role in the distribution, storage and purification of this water. At the Master's Programme in Water Engineering, you will learn cutting-edge measurement, simulation and data analysis methods for the sustainable development of water resources in the built and natural environment. The programme has a profile towards digitalisation in the water sector.

Autumn 2023 Autumn 2023, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

Autumn 2024 Autumn 2024, Uppsala, 100%, On-campus, English

For us to live comfortably and safely, society has a large and constant need to distribute, store and purify water. Experts like water engineers are essential for keeping these systems functioning by, for example, determining the amount of available water, calculating flows in the main water grid, and simulating water run-off in residential areas. The production of drinking water and treatment of wastewater demand long-term solutions that require advanced technical know-how in measurement, simulation and data analysis (including machine learning and artificial intelligence).

Aside from drinking water preparation, stormwater management and water sanitation, water engineering also encompasses surface water hydrology and geohydrology as well as their applications in research and development.

The Master's Programme in Water Engineering at Uppsala University has a strong focus on digitalisation, which is expected to grow increasingly important for the water sector. As such, you will apply highly useful methods for collecting and interpreting digital data in the water industry.

As a student in the programme, you will acquire both theoretical and practical skills in water treatment, storage and conveyance. Digitalisation and machine learning are key concepts throughout, as much of the programme focuses on the analysis of large amounts of data, modelling/simulation and automation within the water sector.

The programme also offers several opportunities for students to participate in research seminars and lectures at the various departments that contribute to the programme. Students are encouraged to engage in faculty research through, for example, degree projects within ongoing research projects.


The programme leads to the degree of Master of Science (120 credits) with Water Engineering as the main field of study.

The programme begins with an introductory course that provides you with a firm footing in hydrology and fluid mechanics, both needed for the subsequent courses in the programme. The introductory course will also teach topics and skills that are pervasive throughout the programme, such as engineering ethics, sustainable technology and written and verbal communication. In addition, the first semester will include an introductory course in programming, as part of the focus on digitalisation.

The second semester will offer advanced courses that build upon those of the first semester, concluding with a course on measurement methods with a focus on sensors in the water sector.

The third semester will include the final course of the digitalisation profile, where digitalisation projects will be carried out together with students from another Master's programme (such as Data Science) using actual data from water systems.

Finally, the programme will conclude with a degree project in water engineering, in which you will be expected to apply the majority of the skills you have learned as part of your training.

Courses within the programme

See the programme outline for courses within the programme.

You are expected to participate and actively contribute to teaching sessions, while also assuming responsibility for your learning.

Instruction consists of lectures, practical assignments, seminars, projects and case studies. In a seminar, you present your ideas and discuss with your classmates a course book or other study material that you are required to read before the seminar; while the teacher usually only moderates the discussion. The aim is to develop critical thinking and collaborative skills. All the students are expected to be active participants in all forms of discussions.

A large part of the programme is spent studying on your own or in a study group outside the classroom, and as such, you must take a proactive role in structuring your own studies.

The programme is intimately tied to contemporary research, and the courses closely follow current developments in water engineering.

The language of instruction is English.

There is a strong and consistent demand for water engineers, both in Sweden and internationally. This includes developing countries, which often have rapidly growing requirements for safe and reliable water supply. Digitalisation is important for the effective use of water, particularly with the looming spectre of climate change, making this educational programme with a focus on digitalisation highly relevant for a career in water engineering.

Upon completion of the programme, you may go on to obtain employment with municipal water services, regional environmental authorities, governmental agencies, and consulting companies. Examples of potential positions include employment as a process engineer at a drinking water or a wastewater treatment plant, as a hydraulic engineer in industry, as a consultant dealing with water and the environment, and as a civil engineer at a hydropower plant.

If you so prefer, you may also elect to stay in academia, pursuing a PhD degree in a field related to hydrology and water engineering. With a skill set that includes modelling, measurement, digitalisation and automation, you will be an attractive candidate for a PhD in hydrology, geohydrology and environmental analysis at Uppsala University, as well as PhD studies at other Swedish universities or internationally.

Career support

During your time as a student, UU Careers offers support and guidance. You have the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities and events that will prepare you for your future career.