Businesses increasingly face significant challenges and opportunities from environmental issues such as climate change, energy, and water and social issues such as labour and human rights, corruption, and transparency. During the two-year Sustainable Business and Innovation Master’s programme,  you will learn about these sustainability challenges and about the (technological) solutions that businesses can use to work in a more environmentally and socially friendly manner.

Become a sustainability change agent

Business stakeholders – such as governments, shareholders, business customers, local communities, consumers, employees, and NGOs – are increasingly demanding that companies become more focused on sustainability for themselves and the communities they impact. The Sustainable Business and Innovation programme offers you a challenging multidisciplinary setting in which to become a sustainability change agent. As a sustainability change agent, you will understand how to help business and organisations in their journey toward making societies more sustainable.

Integrated natural and social science knowledge

Understanding the main sustainability problems and challenges faced by modern societies requires an integrated knowledge of both natural and social sciences. Therefore, the Sustainable Business and Innovation programme consists of a combination of natural and social science courses. You will be introduced to the full range of topics necessary to successfully work with sustainability issues in a variety of contexts.
During your studies, you will learn about topics such as sustainable development, sustainability innovations, life cycle assessment, ecoefficiency and cleaner production, environmental management systems, sustainability reporting, organisational change, and management for sustainability. The course content is framed by life-cycle thinking, systems thinking, and long-term thinking. This programme is ideal for students who wish to complement a natural science background with knowledge of sustainability social sciences and current business practices. 

    I like that real-world business cases are used and you apply the knowledge from it in group projects.

    Kenrick, student Sustainable Business and Innovation

    Programme objective

    As a student in the Sustainable Business and Innovation Master’s programme, you will:

    • gain the knowledge and skills to engage with businesses and help them become more sustainable
    • acquire an understanding of sustainable solutions and innovations as well as ways to assess impacts; and
    • learn to connect sustainability with business strategies in order to develop integrative and long-term solutions to environmental and social challenges

    Why in Utrecht

    Studying Sustainable Business and Innovation at Utrecht University has several advantages and benefits.

    • The Sustainable Business and Innovation programme is closely affiliated with the Innovation Studies, Environmental Governance, and Energy and Resources research group of the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development at Utrecht University. Research conducted at the Copernicus Institute covers a wide range of issues related to sustainable development and innovation. The content of the programme is also highly visible in the research of the groups. 
    • Businesses actively participate in this program by contributing real-life cases that either failed or proved to be highly successful. You will also interact closely with the business world during a consultancy project and your Master’s thesis that you can combine with an internship.
    • Our programme attracts students from diverse parts of the world and is embedded in an institute recognised for the quality of its research.
    • As a Sustainable Business and Innovation student you will have the opportunity to engage in interdisciplinary research projects and establish an international network that can assist you in your future endeavours.

    Key facts

    Science and Innovation (MSc)
    Language of instruction: 
    Mode of study: 
    Study duration: 
    2 years

    Dutch & EU/EEA students: 1 June

    Non-EU/EEA students: 1 April

    Tuition fees: 
    Dutch and other EU/EEA students (statutory fee, full-time) 2024-2025: € 2,530

    Non-EU/EEA students (institutional fee) 2024-2025: € 23,765

    More information about fees
    Croho code: 
    Accredited by the NVAO
    Graduate school: 
    School of Geosciences
    Request a brochure