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The basics
THE Netherlands: Subject Guides - Must read

3 Fields to study in the Netherlands

Learn all about three key fields of study in the Netherlands

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For a country of its size, the Netherlands sure packs a punch. As well as being the most competitive economy in Europe, the nation boasts steady high scores in global measures of happiness and well-being, and is often toted for the tolerant, liberal attitude of its populace. Whilst Dutch universities shine in many disciplines, there are some strong study areas that can’t help but stand out. Let our overview of three key fields to study in the Netherlands help get your study abroad planning underway.



With technical institutions amongst the world’s best, study programmes in engineering fields are keenly popular choices in the Netherlands.


Ranking 67th globally in mechanical, civil and aerospace engineering, Delft University of Technology (TU) is the nation’s strongest in the field. Students are offered a range of bachelormasters and doctorate programmes across a wide spectrum of engineering disciplines, as well as the chance to complete a number of short courses designed to keep qualified engineers abreast of developments within the field.


Pushing a strong ‘learn-by-doing’ approach, students will develop a broad range of problem-solving, technological and creative skills that are widely sought-out by employers in many industries. As well as directly finding employment as engineers, graduates have gone on to careers in banking, consultancy, management and business strategy.


Browse engineering courses in the Netherlands

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Social Sciences

Renowned for its socially liberal, progressive attitude, the Netherlands is a highly internationalised country with a unique social ethos. Climbing to 5th place in the World Happiness Report 2019, the Netherlands has a reputation as one of the happiest countries in the world following Finland, Denmark, Norway and Iceland.


Taking this against the nation’s consistent high scores in international quality of life and happiness surveys, there’s no discernible downside in learning the secrets to their success.


Dutch culture is direct, with a strong focus on egalitarianism and open-mindedness. Students are taught to approach problems from a broad perspective, addressing facts head-on and considering a berth of possibilities before arriving at an answer. With strong ties to other European countries and economic links to the US and Australia, students of politicsinternational relations and sociology will enjoy key insight into world affairs and emerging modes of social thought.


Whilst plenty of Dutch universities offer social science programmes, Wageningen University & Research and the University of Amsterdam pull global rank, coming in at 59th and 62nd respectively in politics and international studies.


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Browse sociology courses in the Netherlands


Environmental Science and Agriculture

Where better to study sustainable energy than within the nation famed for its windmills? As well as a booming agricultural sector that comprises 2.8% of the nation’s GDP, the Netherlands ranks 18th globally for overall environmental performance.


Named the energy hub of Europe, Dutch industry is one of the world’s most energy efficient. By 2050, the Dutch government wants to decrease CO2 emissions to zero. The Netherlands will replace current energy production processes with solar power, hydropower and offshore wind farms to name a few. One of the continent’s major oil-refining centres, the Netherlands is rapidly establishing itself as a global heavyweight in ‘green gas’ technology.


Students will gain key, first-hand experience within one of the world’s strongest agricultural sectors. The Netherlands is the worlds second largest agricultural exporter, behind the USA. In 2018, exporting of agricultural goods produced EUR 90.3 billion for the country’s economy.


Browse environmental science courses in the Netherlands

Browse agriculture courses in the Netherlands


Inspired to sharpen your technical skills, or become an environmental crusader? Browse courses in the Netherlands now and start planning your study abroad adventure!


Useful Links

Applying to study in the Netherlands

Study engineering in the Netherlands