Master in Yacht Design

Program Description

Master in Yacht Design

The Politecnico di Milano Design School jointly offers this Specializing Master with, founded by Politecnico di Milano. The program was founded to meet the strong demand for training in the pleasure-craft segment. The yacht's market requires professionals with specialist post-university training.

The Specializing Master in Yacht Design of the Politecnico di Milano collects and consolidates opportunities and resources developed by the University, with particular reference to skills in the fields of industrial design, fluid dynamics, mechanics, materials science; on the other hand it uses resources, experience, and expertise acquired at a number of other Italian universities including University "Federico II" of Naples, the University of Catania and University of Chieti.


The Specializing Master provides the tools for managing the design and construction of sailing and motor boats, from project brief to definition of general plans, hydrostatic and hydrodynamic calculations, fitting-out of interiors, deck and board equipment, boat systems, production in the yard and control of executive stages. Participation in the Specializing Master allows students to achieve the following training goals:

  • development of planning skills, in particular, problem setting and problem-solving skills in the leisure boat market;
  • development of specialized technical skills; acquisition of principles and procedures of construction methods and techniques;
  • development of skills related to production organization and shipyard management;
  • development of the ability to work in a group and to present oneself with authority in the professional world;
  • ability to manage conflicts in the team and to encourage creativity.

Professional Outcomes

Students attending the programme will find employment at yacht design practices or yards and in ancillary industries. The potential fields of professional involvement are technical office; engineering; project management; production control; quality control; fitting-out; styling; customization; after sales.

Degree Awarded

Upon completion of the Specializing Master, students earn a first-level Politecnico di Milano Specializing Master Degree.


The Specializing Master is held at, Politecnico di Milano, via Durando 38/A, Milan, Italy.


The need to train people to work in the yachting sector is based on the rapid and exponential growth recorded by this sector in recent years. This growth has been further encouraged by the issuing of provisions to encourage the development of this market (from simplifying procedures for port construction to reducing the tax burden on recreational boats over 10 m. etc.). For this reason, the sector shows today a strong professional vocation, with regard both to the skills necessary to the design of recreational boats, their components, and accessories, and to the management of the different stages of the production process.

In particular, the sector is going through a stage of strong growth and development in quantitative and economic terms, although full maturity has not yet been reached. This lag is explained partly by the current lack of executives able to manage and direct this phase of change.

Course Program

A ship, whether sailing boat or motor yacht, is a complex product that integrates several systems for propulsion, living quarters, and various accessory functions. Every decision about one of the technical systems (hull, appendages, interior layout, propulsion, onboard equipment) also affects all the others. A yacht, whether made series or as a one-off, calls for many different construction techniques and a variety of materials. Its interior will reflect design language and fashion, while market competition tends to imbue every ship with a certain amount of innovation. The Specializing Master takes this complexity into account and intersperses classroom experience – nine learning modules that outline different disciplinary fields – with design exercises and visits to shipyards and companies active in the industry, as well as to applied research institutes. The principles of each field are explained and students acquire the skills to apply what they have learned in their designs. Their various special abilities are brought together in workgroups that are called upon to develop a series of work projects.

The Master is completely in English. Attendance of at least 75% of the course activities is required.


The Specializing Master lasts one year and is scheduled to start on February 5, 2018. Classroom training represents a commitment of three to four days per week. The internship at a company in the shipbuilding industry or a design studio runs for 392 hours and is performed full time at the end of the classroom training.

Learning Modules

The course program consists of eight learning modules, plus a design workshop and the internship:

  • Yacht Design: principles, methods, tools, and rules
  • Design and representation
  • Naval Architecture
  • Shipbuilding
  • Onboard Systems and Propulsion Equipment
  • Interior Design
  • Production process and corporate organization
  • Empowerment
  • Design workshop


The internship is required, lasts three months, and is carried out at leading design studios and shipyards. It enables students to transfer skills acquired during the course to a real-life design or production context and to deal with the world of shipbuilding. The training project to be carried out during the internship is agreed upon by the Politecnico di Milano tutor and the company mentor.

Admission Requirements

The Specializing Master in Yacht Design is open to applicants who have a university degree (Laurea, equivalent to a Bachelor of Science) under the old or the new educational system or a Laurea Magistrale (equivalent to a Master of Science) under the new educational system in Architecture, Engineering, and Industrial Design, and in related economic disciplines, and to applicants with equivalent qualifications.

The Board shall admit applicants who have qualifications in disciplines other than those specified above, if the Master may complete the training of the applicant or the professional skills and experience shown by same.

The Specializing Master is completely in English: preference will be given to candidates with a good knowledge of English.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated February 18, 2018
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Feb. 2018
1 year
Full time
12,500 EUR
Italy - Milan
Start date: Feb. 2018
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Feb. 2018
Italy - Milan
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info