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Master EMDC: European Master in Distributed Computing

The EMDC programme is closed, the 2014 application procedure was the last

Overview | Courses | News


The EMDC programme offers education of high international standard as well as cultural experience from two different European countries and a double degree from two universities.

Students from any country are welcome to apply. A number of Erasmus Mundus scholarships are available.

Application deadlines:

  • November 30 (approx, the year before start) for European and non European students asking for a scholarship from the Erasmus Mundus program.

  • March 31, (approx date, the same year) for application with no support.


The Erasmus Mundus European Master in Distributed Computing was approved by the EU-commission in July 2009. It is a cooperation between Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Sweden, Instituto Superior Tecnologico (IST) in Portugal and Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC). It is a two-year Master's programme including built-in mobility for the students.

The EMDC aims at giving the best possible foundation for a career in research and development of scalable and reliable distributed systems. After the program, students should not only understand and be able to use large distributed systems but they should be capable of designing and constructing such systems.


The programme comprises three semesters of course work and one semester for thesis work, 120 ECTS in total.

For the first year of studies, students enter at IST or UPC, where courses cover the core aspects of distributed computing with tailored specializations. The specific profiles offered at IST and UPC address two different sets of concerns in design, development, evaluation, and evolution of distributed computing systems: overall system reliability at IST (fault-tolerance, interoperability, autonomic systems), performance and scalability at UPC (performance measurement, tuning, large-scale systems).

The third semester is completed at KTH and contains advanced courses that integrate the contents of previous semesters. This motivates students to develop large-scale projects integrating both common and complementary skills acquired earlier, and developing research methodology and scientific writing, essential to pursue further studies and research.

The programme concludes with a master’s thesis supervised by one of the three institutions.

Career prospects

The EMDC programme gives its students the best possible foundation for a career in research and development of scalable and reliable distributed systems.

Upon completion of the programme, students will not only understand and be able to use large distributed systems, but they will also be capable of designing and constructing such systems.

In addition, the programme’s built-in mobility enhances the cultural awareness and adaptability of all its participants. These are highly sought-after attributes in the global job market of today.

Graduates of EMDC will be employable within a wide range of industries, possess the potential to start their own innovative businesses or to continue their studies towards a PhD.

Scholarship Opportunities

Erasmus Mundus is an EU initiative supporting university co-operation at the master’s and doctoral levels. It aims to provide top-quality European education to attract the best students from all over the world. The programmes are offered by a group of partner universities and include studies in at least two European countries.

The scholarships cover tuition fees, installation costs and monthly allowance.

  • Non-EU/EEA-citizens may receive up to € 48 000 over two years

  • EU/EEA-citizens may receive up to € 23 000 over two years

The exact level varies according to specific costs borne by the holder of the grant.


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