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Master of Sustainable Development Goals (Business and Sustainability)

Key facts

  • Available via Distance Learning
  • Available for international students via distance learning

Turn your passion for sustainable business into a career

Massey’s Master of Sustainable Development Goals (Business and Sustainability) will give you an advanced grounding in the theory, practice and application of the UN Sustainable Development Goals related to business and sustainability.

Find out more about the Master of Sustainable Development Goals parent structure.

What is it like?

The Master of Sustainable Development Goals (Business and Sustainability) is a new 180-credit taught degree focusing on the theory and practice of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The programme addresses the most pressing imperative facing humanity and the planet: sustainability. This degree is unique in Australasia. It presents a unique opportunity to showcase Pacific and Indigenous paradigms of sustainability as alternatives to dominant western paradigms.  

What are the Sustainable Development Goals?

The SDGs are the UN’s ambitious macro-level plan for humankind’s development and sustainability. The goals address global challenges including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, peace and justice. UN member countries, including New Zealand, began to implement the SDGs in 2016; they will run until 2030. The goals are relevant to both “developed” and “developing” countries.

Follow your interests

You’ll take two core courses in sustainable development. The first will introduce you to theories of sustainable development and the SDGs. The second will focus on multi-disciplinary frameworks, how to measure progress against the SDGs, and paradigms of Indigenous knowledge and practice in the field of sustainability. This will have a strong international flavour.

Then you’ll take courses related to your endorsement in Business and Sustainability. The courses cover topics such as advanced contemporary issues in sustainability, and corporate citizenship and responsibility. You don’t need any prior knowledge of this subject.

This qualification examines the business case for sustainability, business ethics, corporate social responsibility, and how businesses can operate in ways that are socially and environmentally responsible. It addresses good health and well-being (SDG 3), decent work and economic growth (SDG 8), industry, innovation and infrastructure (SDG 9), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11), responsible consumption and production (SDG 12), climate change and action (SDG 13), and partnerships for the goals (SDG 17).

Real-world research

The final 60-credit component of your degree is a research practicum. You’ll identify an agency, corporation or institution with which to work towards policies or practices guided by the SDG framework in business and sustainability. You’ll then conduct research on and analyse the business and sustainability work undertaken by that organisation.

Get ready for the workplace

This qualification will give you:

  • the skills to establish appropriate, collaborative working relationships with professionals in the sustainable development sector;
  • an advanced ability to understand and apply the tools and approaches used in the theory and practice of sustainable development under the framework of the SDGs;
  • critical skills to evaluate the success of particular SDGs in their application to particular real-world problems;
  • a sophisticated understanding of alternative frameworks for the successful application of the SDGs; and
  • the ability to reflect critically on multidisciplinary approaches to the SDGs, their interaction with one another, and their application to complex real-world problems.

Study to suit you

The degree will be taught full-time or part-time over three academic periods (trimesters), with contact workshops on one of our three campuses.


Massey’s Sustainable Development Goals Scholarship will support students who plan a career in sustainable development.


Massey is ranked in the world’s top 300 universities for business studies by the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) ranking.

Master of Sustainable Development Goals: Disaster Management

A good fit if you:

  • Have a degree in any subject
  • Want to address sustainability problems facing both people and planet
  • Seek skills in applying sustainability principles and practices in a business setting
  • Are interested in alternatives to the dominant western paradigm


There is strong demand in the global marketplace for workers with the requisite new skills to translate, implement, monitor and report on the SDGs.

The SDGs are already facing challenges on how the goals’ macro-level aspirations, collected through multiple rounds of global consultation, will be translated into everyday community, health, education, and workplace settings.

Employees with the skills to implement and measure progress against the SDGs are much in demand in both public and private organisations.

Lecturer profile

Associate Professor Gabriel Eweje

Business and Sustainability

Gabriel is Editor-in-Chief, Corporate Governance – An International Journal of Business in Society, and Associate Editor, Business Ethics: A European Review. His background is in teaching, research and consultancy in social issues in management and sustainability. His research interests focus on business ethical behaviour, corporate social responsibility, sustainability disciplines, and the UN sustainable development goals.

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