Certificate Program

Sustainable Business

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Sustain the Ecosystem and increase opportunity

It’s time to conduct business differently

The Certificate in Sustainable Business prepares working professionals and students to harness innovation that benefits the environment, the economy, and communities. Integrating traditional business skills with world-changing thinking, the Sustainable Business program explores sustaining the ecosystem while also increasing business opportunities for a greater good.

  • The environment (with topics in energy and climate change, biodiversity, strategic sustainability)
  • The economy (with topics in sustainable business, managing change, encouraging stakeholders)
  • Communities (with topics in sustainability and planning, cities as systems, the importance of place)

McIntire’s Sustainable Business Certificate has opened doors and provided new focus for me in my professional field. I studied sustainability and business separately in college, but this certification marries the skills of both disciplines and allowed me to make tangible change in my organization. I am equipped to identify sustainability challenges in business, evaluate opportunities for improvement and implement new processes and solutions that both work towards a sustainable future and support the bottom line.

Katie White


Developed in partnership with environmental nonprofit GreenBlue, the 14-week online course of study gives students a broad base of information on major topics:

Business Case

Business are embracing sustainable practices.

  • Importance of Vision
  • The Business Case
  • The Responsibility Case
  • Measuring Progress

Marketing Sustainability

Explore effective approaches to market sustainable products, services, and behaviors.

  • Customer Segmentation
  • Marketing Strategies
  • Greenwashing and Certification Schemes
  • Social Marketing

Sustainability and Finance

Providing a framework for evaluating productive opportunities and guiding capital towards environmentally and socially desirable ends.

  • Analysis of Investment Projects
  • Payments for Ecosystem Services
  • Sustainable and Responsible Investing
  • Impact Investing

Managing Sustainability

Sustainability requires leadership, motivation and commitment from all members of an organization.

  • Encouraging Innovation
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Engaging Stakeholders
  • Managing Change

Strategy for Sustainability

Understand how a firm’s strategy is an important component to its success as a sustainable business.

  • Situational Analysis
  • Establishing Strategic Direction
  • Strategy Formulation
  • Implementing and Executing Strategy

Sustainable Design

Sustainable Design perspectives in the workplace.

  • Introduction to Design Thinking
  • Taking Design Cues from Nature
  • Principles of Green Design
  • Corporate Sustainable Design

Sustainable Structures

Understand the impact of the built environment on natural resources and human health.

  • Why Buildings Matter to Business
  • Green Building Design

Biodiversity & Water

Understand the importance of our limited freshwater and the impact of human influence on our oceans and ecosystems.

  • Biodiversity
  • Water
  • Overfishing
  • Ocean Plastics

Forests, Land and Food

Understand the impact of humans as we intentionally or unintentionally transform the land. The sustainability challenges associated with land, food and forests.

  • Living on the Land
  • Deforestation
  • Soil Degradation
  • Sustainable Agriculture
  • Food Security

Energy and Climate Change

Obtain a scientific understanding of how energy-related emissions contribute to global warming and become conversant about the evolution of international climate-change mitigation treaties.

  • Energy Production and Energy Use
  • Fundamentals of Climate Change
  • Mitigation and Adaption Strategies
  • Alternative Energy Technologies

Life Cycle Assessment

Understand the widely used sustainability evaluation technique known as life cycle analysis (LCA).

  • What is LCA?
  • Conducting a LCA
  • Where is LCA headed?

Top-ranked Faculty

Course Leadership

Mark White

Associate Professor of Commerce; Director, McIntire Business Institute

Kerrie Carfagno

Assistant Professor of Communication, General Faculty; Director, Management Communication Programs

Phoebe Crisman

Professor of Architecture; Director, Global Environments and Sustainability Major

Howie Epstein

Professor of Environmental Science

Lisa Colosi-Peterson

Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering; Director of Graduate Studies

Get Ahead

Drive change in your organization.

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