Top Online MBA Sustainability Specializations

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An online MBA in Sustainability can help working professionals prepare for numerous career prospects, including large and small organizations, renewable energy and sustainability trade firms, ecological advocacy organizations, and municipal or ecological regulatory agencies.

With the development of “green” jobs on the rise, led by the increasing interest in alternative energy sources and climate change, the career outlook is encouraging for anyone interested in sustainability and environmental careers. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s BLS, job growth for environmental scientists and specialists is predicted to increase by nearly 10% through 2030. With this in mind, here are the top ten specializations in sustainability that accompany online MBA programs in some of the best business schools in the nation.

Business Sustainability

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Graduate students pursuing an online MBA degree in Sustainable Business Practices enjoy the flexibility to pursue various business management roles in sustainability-focused organizations, initiatives, and products. The curriculum in this type of program shows distance learners how to integrate sustainability within all business dimensions.

MBA students get the chance to build on the expertise of top-ranked industry professional instructors while developing innovative solutions for client organizations with practical and relevant consulting projects that analyze scenarios, identify opportunities, and flesh out the triple bottom line. Graduate students can also expect to take part in MBA case competitions to hone their analytical and presentation skills as they gain perspectives on global sustainability during an international study trip. A Business Sustainability-focused online MBA allows graduate students to apply leadership strategies that instill positive change into sustainable developments. A Master of Business Administration in this sustainable field can advance a career with targeted resources created for success.

Energy & Sustainability

An online MBA in Energy and Sustainability allows distance learners to study energy and sustainability topics highly of societal importance, like renewable energy concepts, corporate social responsibility, climate change, energy project financing, social entrepreneurship, and global energy economics. These vital issues are covered from a business and financial background within an online Master of Business Administration in Energy & Sustainability Studies program.

Some of the nation’s best business schools feature amenities like small classes for in-depth, personalized learning. Programs accredited by the International Accreditation Council of Business Education or the AACSB-International offer credibility and academic integrity. Designed for active professionals, coursework in these graduate programs presents practical, concrete, and quantitative topics. MBA students develop new tools for immediate application and innovation in their workplace as they advance in the energy industry or lead businesses to become agents for social change. Distance learners can combine online learning with part or full-time studies to design a flexible and personalized schedule. An Energy and Sustainability online MBA is an excellent degree.

Global Sustainable Management

global sustainability

A Global Sustainable Management-focused online MBA gives graduate students the chance to center their education on leadership, social responsibility, and sustainable practices. Sustainable management goes beyond short-term quarterly profits by focusing on the long-term gain that incorporates the social and environmental costs of doing business into management decisions.

An online MBA in Global Sustainable Management empowers business students to succeed socially, fiscally, and environmentally responsible. Some programs in this field will carry six core courses in Business Administration and four “green” courses in sustainable management. Students can also expect a capstone course in sustainable management. One of the best benefits of an online green MBA is the chance for enrolled distance learners to take classes from anywhere worldwide while they work full-time. Besides the specialized courses, students also benefit from core courses that give them a foundation in accounting, finance, and management. This online business degree has a lot to offer.

Managing for Sustainability

More than at any other time in history, entrepreneurial ventures and major companies seek competitive success and advantage by investing in sustainability — environmental and social responsibility — as an essential business strategy. Visionary leaders recognize that this new way of doing business depends on skills in sustainable management, including inter-disciplinary problem solving, social entrepreneurship, eco-efficiency, and the triple bottom line approach to society, economics, and the environment.

Distance learners can make their degrees green online MBAs by adding a Managing for Sustainability specialization. This concentration helps students learn what businesses face in a world where resources are limited, social safety nets are declining, and consumers and commentators are concerned about an organization’s investment in corporate responsibility. Courses within this program can include Supply Chain Analytics, Mission Driven Entrepreneurship, Managing for Sustainability, Global Climate Change, Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility, and Sustainable Change Leadership. Managing for Sustainability is an excellent specialization to add to an online MBA.


Business students choosing to earn an online MBA degree with a Sustainability specialization from one of the nation’s best business schools can help create a better future and thriving business environments based on renewable strategies, policies, and growth initiatives. Beyond improving the environmental impacts of business, online MBA students can learn to streamline processes, lower financial expenditures, and improve internal and external relationships.

Corporate environmental responsibility is essential, and it will only become more vital in the future. Pursuing an online MBA degree in Sustainability allows graduate students to be critical parts of creating a better future by making a business environment marked by strategic growth initiatives and environmentally friendly policies. Successful business sustainability leads by active, demonstrative examples. An online MBA with a concentration in Sustainability can prepare graduate students to lead initiatives and design strategies built on the reliance on science, credible research, and trusted policy recommendations. This leads to leading a business approach that is transparent in its sustainable mission as it creates optimal shareholder value. A business degree in this field is a true asset.

Sustainability & Environmental Compliance

sustainability compliance

MBA students with an eye on the environment can master green business practices with an online Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Sustainability and Environmental Compliance program. Business schools offering this degree have designed it for individuals wanting to make a difference in the world. This online MBA program teaches them to apply practical solutions to some of the most significant issues facing society now and in the future. The MBA in sustainability coursework delivers the skills and knowledge needed to help all organizations comply with constantly evolving environmental laws and achieve sustainability goals.

Distance learners discover how to build infrastructure for ecological strategies that make economic sense while learning how to be advocates for positive change. An online program on this topic offers a traditional MBA curriculum combined with courses focusing on a broad range of ecological and energy-related opportunities and challenges. Because sustainability and environmental compliance instructors bring extensive and comprehensive experience into the virtual classroom – as ecological activists, advocates, and executives – they can provide a solid theoretical framework of the issues while featuring current real-world examples of what they’re teaching. An online MBA in Sustainability & Environmental Compliance is a great idea.

Sustainability Leadership

Graduate students can earn an online Master of Business Administration in Sustainability Leadership and build successful strategies for sustainability within an organization through environmental and social performance as change agents. An online MBA in Sustainability Leadership is designed to deepen distance learners’ understanding of foundational management techniques essential for leaders in nonprofits, governmental, and business organizations.

Sustainability is integrated at the core of every course with a triple bottom line-based curriculum. Utilizing a bioregional approach to online education, MBA students can apply what they learn in each class to their local communities and their careers. They will also make connections between their organizations’ economic objectives while addressing the needs of employees, communities, the environment, and other stakeholders. The curriculum includes lessons on assessing sustainability practices and how these relate to supporting competitive advantage through social and environmental performance. This degree has it all.

Sustainability Management and Analytics

With an online MBA in Sustainability Management and Analytics, business leaders can make a positive social impact on their organization through good environmental progress. An online MBA in sustainability is designed to help distance leaders succeed in their careers as they learn how to protect the world’s most profitable resources with this type of program. Whether you’re a chief sustainability officer, an operations manager, or a civil engineer, an online MBA in Sustainability Management and Analytics provides you with the practical knowledge and skills needed to carry out financially viable sustainability.

Enrolled students in an online sustainability MBA learn how to use traditional methods like lean systems, Six Sigma, and operations research to improve processes, reduce resource waste, and make better environmental and social decisions. Program instructors show graduate students how sustainability is the source of product and process innovation. They allow them to explore various emerging topics that capture developing commercial and industrial innovations. This degree offers flexibility and quality to its students.

Sustainable Fashion Operations


An online Master of Business Administration specializing in Sustainable Fashion Operations is designed to help graduate students become leaders who drive innovation in sustainability in the fashion industry. Enrolled students gain awareness of the main issues of sustainable fashion and utilize innovative thinking to develop future-oriented solutions. This program is perfect for actively working professionals seeking to advance their careers in the sustainable fashion industry and wanting to help make changes toward sustainability. Online MBA students also hone their skills in ethics in this program while gaining the knowledge they need to be successful.

The program’s curriculum helps graduate students become successful leaders who continually evolve, innovate, and implement new business strategies and practices. Enrolled students can plan and apply critical project management skills to ensure projects meet business goals while remaining on time and budget. Business students interested in examining the supply chain and quality of sustainable fashion development while exploring and analyzing the Fashion industry’s triple bottom line will want to investigate an online MBA in Sustainable Fashion Operations.

Sustainable Tourism

A Sustainable Tourism focused online MBA provides a balance to the more traditional hospitality business degree featured at many business schools across the nation. This degree centers on sustainability within hospitality and tourism operations and organizations. Enrolled MBA students acquire knowledge of integrating the socio-cultural, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability within tourism and hospitality.

The curriculum of a sustainable tourism program introduces graduate students to the general principles of sustainable tourism and hospitality by explaining the environmental components and concentrating on the management of sustainable tourism and hospitality operations and organizations. Students also learn about policy and planning aspects of sustainable tourism and hospitality. Using case studies, authentic projects, and various other learning activities, distance learners are introduced to excellent examples of sustainable hospitality and tourism entities that could benefit from increased sustainability practices. Courses within this stellar program can include Principles of Tourism and Sustainability, Environmental Systems and Sustainability, Development and Management of Sustainable Tourism, and Policy and Planning for Sustainable Tourism. An online MBA in Sustainable Tourism is a valuable asset for tomorrow’s business leaders.

Action Plans


While you may be looking into what it takes to get into and perform well in an online MBA in sustainability, there are some action plans you will want to consider to begin your journey.

Picture what kind of organization you want to work within.

Large organizations have the potential to be the most significant driving force for sustainability for their specific operations and the environment at large. Knowing that large firms have the most influence over how business is done, ask yourself if you can work for big business or if a smaller venture is more your speed.

Realize sustainability is more than just “green” initiatives!

A common misconception about MBAs with sustainability emphases is that they exist to advocate for “green” policies in business. While sustainability online MBAs help prepare graduates for jobs promoting environmentally sound policies, business sustainability goes beyond this limited scope.

Find a degree that understands the overarching influence of sustainability in all types of business organizations. Sustainable organizations have a sustainable relationship with stakeholders through corporate social responsibility, with the planet and natural resources via environmentally friendly practices, and with themselves through continuity and disaster preparedness.

Related Resources:

Guide to an Economics Online MBA
Guide to a Sustainability Online MBA
Alternatives to an Online MBA
Top Online MBA Programs

Find Your MBA

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