MSc Sustainability and Leadership

University of Stirling

Program Description

MSc Sustainability and Leadership

University of Stirling

This MSc is designed to provide students with a deep understanding of sustainability and its implications for leading the necessary change and innovation across the different sectors in society. It addresses the need for leadership capacity building to enable the business and social agenda for sustainable development.

The programme recognises the multifaceted nature of sustainability and the complexity of the relationships between environmental, societal and economic systems. To achieve this it integrates knowledge in environmental science, business and management with the needs for sustainable development, innovation and leadership. This programme will enable students to challenge current leadership models and encourage them to create new more sustainable futures.

Students in this programme will:

  • Acquire knowledge, skills and experience for a successful career in sustainable development roles.
  • Develop an in-depth understanding of the complexities of sustainable development and the opportunities and challenges for the environment, society and economy.
  • Enhance capabilities and confidence for leading the sustainable development agenda across different sectors in society.
  • Acquire knowledge, skills and experience for envisioning new more sustainable futures, enacting change and driving innovation.
  • Enhance and develop critical, analytical, interpersonal and other transferable skills for sustainable leadership.

Delivery and assessment

The programme includes a wide range of teaching and assessment approaches including organisational and case study analysis, critical review of readings, short written/computer-based case studies; class exercises; games and reflective exercises; team oral and written reflections; presentations, and real-life case studies. During the Spring semester students working in groups will carry out a consultancy project in collaboration with a external organisation tackling a critical business challenge. This will provide students with the opportunity to integrate and apply the knowledge and skills that you have developed during your Master’s degree.


Sustainability is a core value of Stirling Management School and this is reflected in the recently launched Centre for Sustainable Practice and Living (CSPL), established in partnership with the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). This MSc programme has been developed as one key component of the educational offering of CSPL together with an executive education programme currently under development in collaboration with the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership.

This programme has been developed in consultation with the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) and several other business leaders across the private and public sector. The programme brings together expertise from the School of Natural Sciences and Stirling Management School to provide a more integrated view of sustainability and develop a deep understanding of its implications for leadership capacity building in a diverse range of organisations, communities and society.

Combination of theory and practice - This course combines the latest theories with the application in real organisations. The programme brings together two areas of expertise within the University – sustainable development (School of Natural Sciences) and management and leadership (School of Management).

Excellent opportunities for industrial engagement - The programme has a high level of engagement from industry, research and recruitment partners in the course design, delivery, project work and skill development activities. Students will have the opportunity to gain first hand practical experience by working on consultancy style projects with external clients. The close relationship with SEPA and the connections to influential networks like the Scotland 2020 Climate Group will provide students with unique networking opportunities with key organisations and individual leading sustainability initiatives.


Graduates that meet the current and future needs of industry

The new programme is in response to many conversations with key business leaders, government and environmental stakeholders as well as recognising the global importance of sustainability. Sustainable development is a long-term challenge that is increasingly prevalent for all communities and organisations. The message from the conversations from all stakeholders seems clear - (a) we need a coordinated approach to sustainable development and (b) it is critical that we build leadership capability across all sectors of society to drive the required change and innovation towards the sustainable development goals. It is this leadership capacity building challenge that the proposed programme will address. This new programme integrates knowledge in sustainability, environmental science, management and leadership and in that respect it has a broader nature that narrower specialist programmes that are mostly available in the market.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated February 2, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2016
Full time
Start date Sept. 2016
United Kingdom Stirling, Scotland
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