MIT Technology and Policy Program


We strive to recruit a diverse class of students to the Technology and Policy Program. We seek students who are interested in combining a mastery of a specific technological domain (energy, environment, computation, transportation, aerospace, etc.) with rigorous applied social science (economics, political science, management, law, etc.).

Applicants to the Technology and Policy Program are expected to have sufficient background to excel in advanced subjects in engineering, data analysis, statistics, economics, political science, and management, as well as to complete a research thesis that contributes to the field of technology policy. When admitting students, we look for:

  • Academic excellence,
  • Interest in technology policy, and
  • Capacity for technology policy leadership.

Most (but not all) successful candidates have one or more years of work experience after their undergraduate degree. In recent years roughly half of the incoming students have undergraduate degrees from North America, and the other half from Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

Academic Excellence

With regard to academic excellence, we evaluate each applicant individually, taking into account the opportunities that each prospective student has had to demonstrate their capabilities. In this context, we evaluate indicators such as university coursework, research achievements, and standardized test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). We pay particular attention to recent evidence of academic performance, and achievements in areas directly relevant to technology and policy.

Applicants who are not native speakers of English must also present the results of their International English Language Testing System test (IELTS), taken within the last two years. We prefer applicants who score at least 7.5 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) academic test.

Interest in Technology Policy

We evaluate prospective students’ interest in technology and policy through their prior experience and their personal statements. Practical experience in understanding how technology issues are applied in real-world contexts is important to students’ success in the program. Generally, successful applicants have previous work or internship experience in government, nonprofit, or industry sectors.

We are particularly interested in hearing about the goals and career plans of applicants through their personal statements, and how TPP will fulfill their objectives.


We seek students who are prepared to work for the good of a larger community. Leadership experience is interpreted broadly – we would like to hear through your personal statement how you have influenced and inspired the people around you. We are especially interested in candidates who can be effective in motivating concern about issues, catalyzing coalitions to effect change, and managing implementation of new policies.

Admissions Process

Applications are accepted in December each year. Faculty review of applications begins in January, and candidates are generally sent offers of admission by mid- to late-February. Tuition and stipends for accepted students are generally supported by research assistantships, and students apply for and secure such assistantships from supervising faculty and researchers between March and September.  The incoming class begins in September.

Students who would like to apply for admission should do the following:

  1. Complete the application online. The deadline is December 15. An application fee of $75 will be required to submit the application; however, you can create an account, prepare and review the application before paying the fee. Fee waivers can be requested from MIT’s Office of Graduate Education for U.S. applicants for whom this fee creates financial hardship. We strongly recommend starting the process early. The TPP online application will require you to submit a current resume, a cover letter, letters of recommendation, and a response to this supplemental question.
  2. Take the required tests:
    • IELTS: A score of 7.5 or above is required (To learn more about IELTS, visit
    • GRE: General test required.
      • Department code: 3514
  3. Arrange for official transcripts and test scores to be sent to:

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology- TPP
    77 Massachusetts Avenue, Room E17-373
    Cambridge, MA 02139-4307

Please direct any questions to Ed Ballo at:

Phone: (617) 258-7295,

© MIT Technology and Policy Program | 77 Massachusetts Avenue | Cambridge, MA 02139-4307 | 617-253-7693 | L