Businesses are changing the way they think about products, technologies, operations and business models, all while ensuring that these deliver environmental, social and financial benefits.
If you have a positive vision of the future, want to lead innovation and do business better – either across a large organisation or through your own startup – then the MSc in Sustainability and Business is ideal for you.
Uniquely based outside of a business school, we are preparing you, the next generation of innovators, to think, develop and reinvent sustainable enterprises in an increasingly challenging world.
Learn what shapes the relationships between business, environment and society, and how individuals and organisations can address social and environmental problems by means of creating and developing new businesses and innovation.
You'll develop specialist skills to meet the growing need for sustainable entrepreneurship and innovation. Although large corporations are more visible, real innovation in sustainability is emerging and being driven by new businesses.
Practical skills – like developing ideas and plans for new sustainable ventures, pitching to investors and acting as a change agent within large organisations – give you experience of genuine business challenges faced in the real-world.
We offer you a truly inter-disciplinary learning experience that gives you the chance to work with your peers across subject areas to co-develop new business projects.
The course is split in to 3 semesters if you study on a 12 month full-time basis. In the first 2 terms you will take lectures and seminars, followed by approximately 4 months of individual work leading to the submission of a dissertation in late August.
You’ll consider different aspects of sustainability, while a wide range of optional modules allow you tailor your study to fit your interests and career plans.
You can also choose an optional overseas field course which enables you to gain practical experience and apply classroom-based learning first hand in a developing country context.
The course runs for 24 months on a part-time basis, with each year split into 3 semesters. You will take 2 modules in each semester, followed by individual work leading to the submission of a dissertation in semester 3 of your final year.
You will learn through a variety of teaching methods to help you develop both generic and subject-specific skills.
This includes lectures, real case studies, practical workshops, computer lab sessions, research seminars from external speakers, project work (individual and groupwork) and a written dissertation.
Practical exercises focus around real-world scenarios and case studies to produce optimal solutions including familiarisation with state-of-the-art technical approaches, software and the regulatory regimes that companies and public sector organisations operate within.
The research-intensive environment of the School ensures that your course material is both up-to-date and research led.
You'll also learn the scientific and rational principles lying behind the practical approaches used in the world outside academia, so that your skills keep pace with changes in technology or the regulatory environment.
The School of Earth and Environment’s £23m building gives you access to world-class research, teaching and facilities.
You will be assessed through a variety of ways including both written and oral assignments and exams.
You will learn the skills to pursue careers both in business and in other sectors of the economy, such as government or non-governmental organisations.
Your final career destination often depends on the experience you have had before starting the Masters, so if you have already worked in business you may find it easier to get sustainability or CSR jobs in companies immediately after graduation.
This Masters could also help you enhance your current sustainability credentials, returning to your jobs with new skills and understanding.
Alternatively, you could pursue a research career and continue on to a PhD.
Recent graduates work for local government or NGOs, or undertake internships. While others are now working for consultancy companies.
Typical roles undertaken by our recent graduates:
Upon completing the Master of Science in Business Economics, you will be able to apply scientific frameworks independently and critically, allowing you to evolve continuously in a dynamic society. By combining this programme with initial specialisations from your bachelor's programme, you will develop deeper insight into a broad range of fields. The programme is structured around the choice of a major and minor discipline, which allows you to fine-tune your personal graduation profile, and to apply research- and evidence based management practices and tools in various domains. You will gain expertise in selecting best practices in management in today’s volatile, complex and ambiguous business environments. The programme equips you for both entrepreneurship and start-up management as well as for management and strategic decision making in established organisations.
KU Leuven occupies a leading position in management and economic research and is highly ranked by the European Economic Association. Top-level research and education complement and strengthen each other. The Faculty of Economics and Business Alumni Association includes many leaders of industry, ensuring excellent career opportunities for our graduates.
The Faculty of Economics and Business has close links with top business schools around the world, such as Copenhagen Business School in Denmark, University of Cardiff in the UK, Hanken in Finland, SKEMA Business School in France, the University of Illinois in the United States, the University of Sydney and the University of Adelaide in Australia, Queen's University in Canada, Tsinghua and Fudan University in China, PUC in Brazil, City University of Hong Kong and many more institutions both in Europe and overseas.
For students MSc in Business Economics, the faculty offers an additional semester at one of these destinations after completing 2 semesters in Leuven. Make your experience truly international by studying in different parts of the world.
You have an entrepreneurial personality with broad socio-economic interests. You are fascinated by the business world and would like to pursue a management career in strategy, international business or finance.
To start this programme, students need a solid background in economics or business economics. They should have acquired the basic conceptual frameworks of diverse areas in business economics and have a sufficiently broad view on the general economic and social contexts in which business operates as well as on the human networks within these organisations.
Specifically, students need:
Building on previously acquired general economic knowledge and insights in business, the student is taught to judge complex business structures and propose creative solutions independently or in a team. He develops the skills to take on a management function in a company, he learns to fit decisions in with the whole structure of a company and assess strategic consequences for other departments of the company. He has a lot of specialised knowledge, but is also very versatile.
The programme consists of a compulsory part, a major and a minor and a Master's Thesis.
Graduates generally take up managerial and/or research positions in business, national and international institutions, and in managerial functions at universities. Given the variety of skills acquired, you will be highly sought-after by a wide range of companies (from small firms to multinational corporations) in a variety of positions and sectors in Belgium or abroad.
You can pursue a career as:
This is only a small selection of the many options available to you.