Bachelor in Global Sustainability Science

General

Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

In the Global Sustainability Science programme, you learn how to develop solutions to sustainability issues. This involves studying the interaction between humans and nature at the local, regional, and global level. The programme will equip you to make a meaningful contribution to our planet.

A multidisciplinary approach

A sustainable planet is one that is livable for current and future generations. You are of course conscious that we face huge challenges: the distribution of water, food and energy, climate change, and the depletion of our resources are only some of these hot topics. Sustainability is a complex concept and it increasingly calls for broad expertise and a multidisciplinary approach. This programme gives you the tools you’ll need to examine sustainability from a number of different perspectives and to come up with solutions that can change the world.

Select a track or put together your own

What’s special about this Bachelor’s is that, after the first year, you have the option of selecting one of four tracks, depending on the specific balance you’d like to have between the natural and the social sciences. Since we certainly don’t want to limit your ambition, you can also put together your own track or choose other subjects, both within and outside this Bachelor.

A balance between natural and social science subjects

The programme offers you the right balance between natural and social science subjects, preparing you for a future as a professional interlocutor, bridge-builder, and problem solver. You acquire an understanding of the natural, biochemical, and hydrological processes (water cycle) that maintain the Earth in balance. This means taking science subjects like mathematics, physics, and chemistry. You also learn about how socio-economic processes contribute to solving sustainability issues. To this end, you take social science subjects like public administration, economics, and innovation. The programme also stresses team-work and communications. You learn how to set up your own research, to work individually and in teams, and to advise organizations as a consultant. If you satisfy the profile, then you’re sufficiently qualified to take all the courses in this three-year Bachelor’s programme.

Tracks

After your first year, you’ll be choosing one of four tracks so as to acquire extra in-depth knowledge. You’ll also be able to put together your own track or choose other subjects, both within and outside this Bachelor.

These are the four tracks:

  • Water, Climate & Ecosystems
  • Energy & Resources
  • Governance & Societal Transformation
  • Business & Innovation

Facts and figures

Student satisfaction survey

In 2017, 74 students from the Bachelor’s programme Global Sustainability Science filled in the Nationale Studenten Enquête (a Dutch annual nationwide student satisfaction survey). On average, the study programme is rated at 4.1 on a scale of 1 to 5. The graphic below shows a detailed breakdown of separate programme parts. As Global Sustainability Science is unique in The Netherlands, these results cannot be compared to other programmes. Hence the chart does not include comparative nationwide data.

Career Prospects

A Profession of the Future

Governments and businesses are increasingly putting sustainability on their agendas. They need people with your qualifications badly. This new programme provides you with a fantastic basis for an international career, which will be the envy of many. As a broadly trained interlocutor, bridge-builder and problem-solver, you’re thoroughly competent and knowledgeable. You can analyze issues, grasp them from a variety of perspectives, and formulate solidly-grounded conclusions. Your line of reasoning has an impact on organizations and on people with conflicting interests. You’re able to bring them together. Not only thanks to your expertise but also because you communicate clearly and are an excellent team player. You can really achieve something great!

Managers and administrators of private and government organizations need consultants like you to help develop sustainability policies or organize sustainable production chains. You might also set up your own sustainable production chain, webshop, or international sustainability consultancy.
Perhaps in the future, you’ll become a ‘Healthy Water Specialist’, ‘Sustainable Business Inspirator’, or ‘Nature-People Mediator’. You can of course also contribute to furthering sustainability by becoming a researcher/scientist.

Last updated May 2020

About the School

Founded in 1636, Utrecht University is an esteemed international research university, consistently positioned number one in The Netherlands, 14th in continental Europe and the worldwide top 100 of int ... Read More

Founded in 1636, Utrecht University is an esteemed international research university, consistently positioned number one in The Netherlands, 14th in continental Europe and the worldwide top 100 of international rankings, and member of the renowned European League of Research Universities. Read less