Career Opportunities in Public Administration after a Master’s Programme

  • Façade of the Ministry of Justice ©Mike_OFaçade of the Ministry of Justice ©Mike_O

The Public Administration policy stream is an option within Master’s programmes at the Sciences Po School of Public Affairs. It is particularly designed for students seeking to take on responsibilities of various kinds in the public sector, institutional relations or political communication, at a local, national, European or international level.

The stream is additionally aimed at students intending to sit competitive civil service recruitment exams or apply for contracted positions in the civil service in France or abroad, as well as those interested in entering the private sector, in consultancy firms or the public affairs departments of large companies.

Professional fields accessible to graduates of the Public Administration policy stream

The skills and knowledge students gain over the course of the specialised Public Administration programme open up career destinations in diverse fields across the public and private sector.

Careers in the public sector

Students may go on to sit competitive recruitment exams for the senior civil service in France or abroad.

  • French Government: National Assembly, Senate, Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Court of Audit, Council of State, Inspectorate General of Finances, Directorate General of the Treasury, administrative courts
  • Regional authorities: French territorial collectivities, inter-municipal networks
  • Public health administration: public hospitals, healthcare facilities, social and medical-social institutions, health insurance providers.
  • European civil service
  • Other public bodies: Bank of France, military, internal security and foreign intelligence, consulates etc.

They may also wish to enter careers in politics.

Services and fields relating to public administration in the private sector

The programme opens up a wide variety of career destinations in the private sector:

  • Public affairs departments of French or international companies;
  • Public affairs consultancy firms (strategy, communications, lobbying);
  • Political communications;
  • Civil society organisations;
  • Think tanks;
  • Start-ups (EdTech, participatory democracy etc.).

Career paths and professions after a Public Administration specialisation

Graduates of the Public Administration policy stream go on to careers in highly varied fields and professions, whether in the public or the private sector, directly relating to public administration, public affairs or at the intersection of both these sectors. Graduates gain access to a variety of positions.

In public administration

Professions accessible by contract or through competitive examination (Institut du Service Public, Inet, City of Paris, Parliament, administrative tribunals, Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs).

  • Parliamentary assistant;
  • Advisor in a ministerial office or a regional authority;
  • Regional councillor;
  • Municipal councillor;
  • Parliamentary administrator;
  • Civil administrator;
  • Director of a health, social and medico-social facility;
  • Director of the office of a Prefect or Sub-Prefect of a district;
  • Auditor at the Conseil d'Etat;
  • Auditor at the Cour des comptes;
  • Counsellor of an administrative court and an administrative court of appeal;
  • Advisor to the Chambre régionale des comptes;
  • Counsellor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs;
  • Inspector at the General Inspection of Finance;
  • Inspector at the General Inspection of Administration;
  • Inspector at the General Inspection of Social Affairs;
  • Senior executive at the Bank of France;
  • Maritime administration official;
  • European affairs official;
  • Public finance accountant;
  • Customs inspector;
  • Health administration official;
  • Director of a public or private hospital.

In private companies

  • Public relations manager;
  • Director of public affairs;
  • Institutional relations manager;
  • Public policy consultant;
  • Analyst;
  • Political communications officer;
  • Innovation project manager;
  • Public affairs officer;
  • Director of international operations.


Pierre Benassaya, Class of 2019 and President of the NGO Graines Populaires

> Read our interview with Pierre Benassaya

Tony Brando, Class of 2019 and Technical advisor and parliamentary collaborator

> Read our interview with Tony Brando

Jean-Baptiste Baudat, Class of 2017 and Institutional Affairs Officer of the Kering Group

> Lire Read our interview with Alexandre Fongaro

Examples of institutions and organisations that recruit our graduates

Public sector

Parliaments - Government ministries - the French National Assembly - Senate - Court of Audit - State Council - Inspectorate General of Finances - Directorate General of the Treasury - Bank of France - Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and other French ministries - Paris City Hall - General Directorate for External Secutiry (DGSE) - General Directorate for Internal Security (DGSI) - Prisons and correctional facilities - the Agence Nationale de la Cohésion des Territoires - Embassies - the Direction de la cohésion sociale - Direction départementale interministérielle - General Inspectorate of Social Affairs (IGAS)

Public companies

EDF - GDF - Orano - EADS - La Poste - CNP - Air France - SNCF - RATP - Radio France - France télévision

European institutions

European Parliament - European Council - Council of the European Union - European Commission - Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) - European Central Bank (ECB) - European Court of Auditors (ECA) - European External Action Service (EEAS)

Private companies

EY Consulting - Capgemini - Accenture - Mazars - BCG - KPMG - YCE Partners - L'Oréal - Kering - Sanofi - Coca-Cola - Chanel - MAIF - Axa - CMA CGM - Carrefour

NGOs and international organisations

World Bank - Amnesty International - UNICEF - UNESCO - World Health Organisation (WHO) - OECD - UN

Skills and qualities necessary for work in public administration

Becoming a senior civil servant or public sector contractor requires several key skills, including ethical awareness, commitment and a sensitivity to public interests, in addition to strong adaptability.

The specialised Public Administration track offered at Sciences Po’s School of Public Affairs equips its students with numerous professional skills for work in the public sector in particular:

  • Analysis and evaluation of public policies
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Project design and direction
  • Change management
  • Leadership
  • Broad understanding of the world of public administration

> Find out more about the programme structure of the Public Administration Master’s policy stream

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