Sustainable Business and Innovation Specialization

At a time of indisputable societal and environmental change, students specializing in Sustainable Business and Innovation will examine the unique role of the private sector and gain a broad understanding of how embedding sustainability into core business strategy benefits financial performance and management practices.

The specialization provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to create economic value in tandem with social and environmental value at their current and future employers. Students will develop a mindset for proactive citizenship and an expertise in today’s most pressing global issues, increasing their academic and professional competitiveness and positioning themselves at the forefront of thought leadership on the future of business.

To complete the Sustainable Business and Innovation Specialization, students must complete a total of 9 credits from the following list of courses:
  • (Required) The Foundational course Sustainability for Competitive Advantage (BSPA-GB.2305; 3 credits) is a multi-disciplinary course that educates students on the role of business in dealing with today’s societal challenges and introduces them to an effective firm-wide leadership sensibility that drives competitive advantage by integrating sustainability across corporate functions.  *Required for students beginning the MBA program during or after Fall 2020.
  • To fulfill the remaining 6 credits, students will choose from the following list of over 25 courses. To guide your decision, we offer the following descriptors for each course:
    • Discipline: These courses enable students to work cross-functionally within organizations and provide skills for leadership and professional competitiveness. The courses provide training in professional disciplines including:
      • Economic Development & Social Entrepreneurship
      • Strategy & Management
      • Finance & Accounting
    • Issue Area: These courses encourage students to pursue interests in specific issues, developing expertise on current and future global challenges. Students will examine the systemic complexities of the issues and how the networks and resources of the private sector can be leveraged to address them, creating both societal and economic value.
    • *Note: Courses with codes that start with “PADM” are offered through the NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. Students may complete up to 3 of the 6 credits through these courses. In other words, 6 of your total 9 specialization credits must be earned through courses offered by Stern.
    • For more information visit the Center for Sustainable Business

Academic Advisors:
Tensie Whelan, 212-998-0530

Course List


BSPA-GB.2305 Sustainability for Competitive Advantage
(For students beginning the MBA program during or after Fall 2020) 

Complete the remaining 6.0 credits from the lists below:

Course Number Course Title Course Descriptor
ACCT-GB.3124 Accounting for Sustainability Discipline: Finance & Accounting
BSPA-GB.2109 Sustainable Business Innovation in Costa Rica  
BSPA-GB.2305 Sustainability for Competitive Advantage Foundational Course, Required
BSPA-GB.2304 Social Entrepreneurship & Sustainable Development Discipline: Economic Development & Social Entrepreneurship
BSPA-GB.2306 Social Enterprise in Sustainable Food Business Issue Area: Food; Public Health
BSPA-GB.2307 Case Study Development in Sustainable Business Discipline: Strategy & Management
BSPA-GB.2308 Driving Market Solutions for Clean Energy Issue Area: Energy; Climate
BSPA-GB.2331 Law, Business and Human Rights Issue Area: Human Rights
BSPA-GB.3305 Global Markets, Human Rights, and the Press Issue Area: Human Rights
BSPA-GB.3110 Work, Wisdom, and Happiness* Discipline: Strategy & Management
DBIN-GB.3110 Doing Business in Costa Rica: Sustainable Business in Latin America Discipline: Strategy & Management
DBIN-GB.3122 Doing Business in Copenhagen: Regenerative Sustainability Discipline: Strategy & Management
DBIN-GB.3318 Doing Business in South Africa (Cape Town) Discipline: Strategy & Management
ECON-GB.2346 Growth in the Developing World and the Global Economy Discipline: Economic Development & Social Entrepreneurship
FINC-GB.2360 Sustainable Capitalism: A Longer Term Finance Perspective Discipline: Finance & Accounting
FINC-GB.2347 Economic and Financial Approach to Climate Change Discipline: Finance & Accounting
FINC-GB 2375 Managing Climate, Cyber, Geopolitical, and Financial Risk Discipline: Finance & Accounting
FINC-GB.3148 Social Venture Capital Discipline: Finance & Accounting
FINC-GB.3348 Investing for Environmental and Social Impact Discipline: Finance & Accounting
FINC-GB.3355 Impact Investing in Family Offices Discipline: Finance & Accounting
INTA-GB 2122 Disruption, Entrepreneurship & Social Impact Discipline: Strategy & Management
INTA-GB.2324 Business, Economy and Policy in the Midst of Covid-19 Issue Area: Public Health
INTA-GB.3110 Investor Relations Strategy Discipline: Finance & Accounting
INTA-GB.3171 Independent Study: Signature Project -NYU Impact Investing Fund (NIIF)** Discipline: Finance & Accounting
INTA-GB 3372 Board Fellows Experiential Learning Program Discipline: Strategy & Management
MGMT-GB 2100 Inclusive Leadership Discipline: Strategy & Management
MGMT-GB.2368 Strategy: A Social Purpose Discipline: Strategy & Management
MKTG-GB.2323 Marketing and Sustainability. Discipline: Strategy & Management

Maximum of 3 credits from this set: 
Course Number Course Title Course Descriptor
PADM-GP 2186* Leadership and Social Transformation: Sparking Social Change Discipline: Strategy & Management
PADM-GP 2311 Social Impact Investment Discipline: Finance & Accounting
PADM-GP 2312 Managing Financial and Social Returns of the Social Enterprise Discipline: Finance & Accounting
PADM-GP 4314  Environmental Finance and Social Impact Discipline: Finance & Accounting
PADM-GP 4313  The Intersection of Finance and Social Justice Discipline: Finance & Accounting

*Work, Wisdom and Happiness is eligible to meet specialization requirements beginning Fall 2019
*Only Leadership and Social Transformation taught by Professor Briggs in Spring 2020 is eligible. 
**This course must be manually pointed in order to fulfill your specialization requirements. Please contact Academic Affairs and Advising for more information. 
For course descriptions, please see the Office of Records & Registration website.