Towards a sustainable way of doing business

Businesses increasingly have to reinvent themselves to meet the demands of a world characterised by societal challenges such as climate change, population growth, migration and globalisation. Pressure from consumers, regulators and other stakeholders stimulates organisations to combine financial and social goals, rather than focusing solely on shareholder value. More than ever, businesses need strategic renewal and value creators with transformative leadership qualities to help steer them in the desired direction. Do you want to experience the opportunities, challenges and dilemmas that businesses face today? Do you want to develop the knowledge and skills required to assess and enhance business ecosystems? Do you want to become an expert in designing new strategies for societal value creation? Our new and innovative Master’s programme in Business and Social Impact provides you with a solid grounding in economics & management, and equips you with practical skills, tools and networks for a rewarding career with organisations that lead the way on corporate responsibility.

Watch the video in which Dr Friedemann Polzin explains how in this programme you can learn to achieve societal impact by combining business tools and the understanding of the economic and policy context.

The real world perspective

The Utrecht University School of Economics (U.S.E.) aims to contribute to an economy where people flourish. We enrich economics with other disciplines to better solve problems and identify opportunities, from a business and a government point of view. Scientifically rigorous and societally relevant. The real world perspective. This means engaging with a range of business, government and NGO stakeholders that form the BSI company ecosystem.

We have, as a society, to facilitate entrepreneurship focused on societal challenges.

Research expertise

This programme is based on Utrecht University’s world-class research in business strategy, organisation, marketing, entrepreneurship and innovation. The academic staff of Utrecht University School of Economics (U.S.E.) excel in integrating business perspectives with broader socio-economic issues. This comes to the fore in our Strategic Theme Pathways to Sustainability,  Sustainable Finance Lab, the Social Entrepreneurship Initiative and its link with the business world and policy practice. 

Content of the programme

In this Master’s programme in Business and Social Impact, you will focus on:

  • the role of business in today’s society;
  • understanding and appreciating the wider context of business and business ecosystems, along with the various stakeholders;
  • developing strategies for doing business for society, in connection with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs);
  • dealing with the challenges, opportunities, tensions and dilemmas that come with combining financial and social value;
  • the role of marketing in doing business;
  • obtaining and managing finance for business that combines financial and social goals.

Read more about the study programme.

Programme objectives

The Master’s programme in Business and Social Impact provides you with:

  • the tools, skills and techniques to transform businesses and strengthen their social value creation;
  • market analysis and empirical techniques for such analysis, including customer development;
  • strategy creation abilities. Special attention is paid to redesigning strategies to meet (new or existing) missions and values in line with the SDGs;
  • competences for dealing with tensions and synergies between businesses’ growth ambitions and social goals;
  • knowledge of the types of finance that businesses aiming to create social value can draw upon.

Career prospects

Graduates from the Master's programme in Business and Social Impact are experts in identifying opportunities for businesses to do more and do better for society, and developing the organisational strategies to make this happen. This expertise is highly sought after by employers, including medium-sized enterprises, large (multinational) corporations and family businesses. Read more about possible career prospects

Key facts

Degree: 
International Economics and Business
Language of instruction: 
English
Mode of study: 
Full-time
Study duration: 
1 year
Start: 
September
Tuition fees: 
Dutch and other EU/EEA students (statutory fee, full-time) 2023-2024: € 2,314

Non-EU/EEA students (institutional fee) 2023-2024: € 21,736

More information about fees
Croho code: 
60648
Accreditation: 
Accredited by the NVAO
Faculty: 
Law, Economics and Governance 
Brochure: 
Request a brochure