MSc Green Infrastructure / Course details

Year of entry: 2022

Coronavirus information for applicants and offer-holders

We understand that prospective students and offer-holders may have concerns about the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The University is following the advice from Universities UK, Public Health England and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Read our latest coronavirus information

Course description

MSc Green Infrastructure aligns expertise from geography with that from landscape and environmental planning.

The course is the first of its kind to bring together the theory, practice and evaluation of green infrastructure.

The MSc provides the foundations to understand why we need green infrastructure, alongside an understanding of how we transition from design to implementation.

It is taught by nationally and internationally recognised experts in green infrastructure who will deliver a course that trains graduates with the conceptual, practice-based, and evaluative skills needed to develop green infrastructure in real-world scenarios.

The course benefits from an integration of cutting-edge research by The University of Manchester researchers who are working at the forefront of investment, design and management of urban greening, sustainable drainage, health and well-being, economic prosperity, policymaking and nature-based solutions to urban problems.

Manchester, and the north-west of England, also offers an excellent real-world 'laboratory' to test alternative approaches to green infrastructure.

You will engage with policy, practice and communities to gain an appreciation of the range of added benefits that green infrastructure can deliver and develop an understanding of the innovation solutions that it offers.

Working with, and being taught by, green infrastructure practitioners, also provides the course with a clear link between academic thinking and real-world application.

This course has normally included a field trip to explore state-of-the-art green infrastructure schemes and engage practitioners and policy makers.


  • Introduce the concept and principles of green infrastructure.
  • Develop a critical awareness of the values, benefits and functions of different types of green infrastructure.
  • Understand key policies relevant to formation and implementation of green infrastructure.
  • Understand the methods and approaches used to assess the performance of green infrastructure.
  • Gain practical experience in the monitoring and evaluation of green infrastructure.
  • Learn from real-world examples and practitioners of green infrastructure.
  • Benefit from a highly interdisciplinary and applied course.

Special features

  • Geography has been studied at Manchester for more than 125 years, and we're one of Europe's best-equipped universities for the subject.
  • We're home to world-class academics and the new Manchester Urban Institute (MUI) .
  • 90% of our Geography research is rated as 'world-leading' or 'internationally excellent' in terms of impact (Research Excellence Framework 2014).
  • Join the Manchester University Geographical Society (MUGS) a society run by Geography students for Geography students.

Teaching and learning

A wide variety of teaching and learning methods are employed across the MSc, including, but not limited to, small group discussion, seminars, field visits, computer-based practical sessions, and one-to-one discussion with staff members.

The course will provide you with a variety of opportunities for active engagement and participation.

The MSc makes use of a range of e-Learning and web-based methods and activities to support and complement the traditional classroom-based learning.

A key focus of the MSc course is the linkage between staff research expertise and the teaching provision.

Important notice

The School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED) aim to run advertised fieldwork in the 22/23 academic year and we very much hope that students will be able to enjoy the fieldwork experience in the usual way. The ability of fieldwork to proceed, and whether any changes to proposed fieldwork might be necessary, will remain subject to the current global situation and factors such as the:

  • rules and guidance on travel and activities implemented and published by the UK and overseas governments; 
  • outcome of any risk assessments conducted by the University; 
  • educational value and student experience of the fieldwork, if significant changes to the proposed fieldwork would be necessary; 
  • availability of appropriate insurance cover; 
  • availability of appropriate travel and accommodation and any significant changes to their financial costs.

We will therefore assess on a regular basis the viability of any travel and fieldwork and communicate any decisions to our students at the earliest possible opportunity.

Any fieldwork that does go ahead will be subject to a rigorous risk assessment process and the implementation of any protective measures identified by the risk assessment to ensure the health and safety of all our students and staff.

If the fieldwork does not go ahead as planned, then the School's focus will be on seeking to offer a suitable alternative and ensure that the Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) of the programme are met.

Coursework and assessment

You must accrue 180 course credits to achieve the required standard for recommendation to the degree of MSc.

The dissertation, based on an original research project of your own design, accounts for 60 credits.

The remaining 120 credits are based on five compulsory and three optional 15 credit course units.

All assessment for the compulsory course units is coursework-based, with no unseen written exams.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Dissertation Support GEOG60662 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Principles, Policies and Practice 2 ¿ Field class GEOG64002 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Performance, Evaluation and Monitoring GEOG64011 15 Mandatory
MSc Green Infrastructure Dissertation GEOG74000 60 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure and Sustainable Cities PLAN60852 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Principles, Policies and Practice 1 PLAN64001 15 Mandatory
Environmental Remote Sensing GEOG60941 15 Optional
GIS and Environmental Applications GEOG60951 15 Optional
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Practice GEOG70552 15 Optional
Applied Study Unit GEOG70560 15 Optional
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Concepts GEOG70581 15 Optional
Issues in Environmental Policy GEOG70911 15 Optional
Political Ecologies GEOG70952 15 Optional
Spatial Ecology GEOG71921 15 Optional
Climate Change, Disasters and Responses MGDI60552 15 Optional
Planning and Managing Development MGDI70992 15 Optional
Professional Placement PLAN60070 15 Optional
Design for Healthy Places PLAN60111 15 Optional
Environmental Impact Assessment PLAN60411 15 Optional
Concepts in Environmental Law PLAN60442 15 Optional
Strategic Environmental Assessment PLAN60461 15 Optional
Planning for Environmental Change PLAN60771 15 Optional
Displaying 10 of 22 course units


We are one of Europe's best-equipped universities for geography, with numerous laboratories. These include the main teaching laboratory, microscopy laboratory, and sediments and project laboratories.

You can also learn professional skills such as coding and programming specialist, industry-standard software such as image processing, GIS, GPS and cartographic representation.

The University's Main Library is the largest university library system in the UK apart from the copyright libraries and has a number of different working spaces. It is home to the University Map Collection, which comprises about 100,000 map sheets of every part of the world.

We also have our very own Kantorowich Library, which contains many of the teaching and learning materials that you will need, from books and journals to DVDs and past dissertations.

For more information, see our Facilities webpage.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email:

CPD opportunities

The Planning and Environmental Management Placement course unit will be offered as an optional course unit.

You will also be engaging with practitioners to gain experience of Green Infrastructure practice, which may lead to CPD opportunities.

The course will also work with careers staff to provide advice/guidance and opportunities to engage with practice via open days and other career development programmes.