M.Sc. On Campus

Sustainable Development

Utrecht University

24 months
20750 EUR/year
2209 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Sustainable Development programme at Utrecht University is aimed at students who want to contribute to the design of the solutions needed to achieve an environmentally and socially accountable society. In this programme, you will learn how to analyse the processes associated with change and will consider the short and long term management of these processes on local and global levels. 


Multidisciplinary perspective

The Sustainable Development programme at Utrecht University is suitable for candidates who want to study and solve societal sustainability issues from a multidisciplinary perspective. 

The programme is of particular interest to students who are willing to broaden their perspectives through collaboration and interaction with students who bring to the programme knowledge of other natural and social science disciplines. 

Specialise in one of four tracks

Following admission to this Master's programme you can choose one of four specialisation tracks based on your interests in the field. As well as working in your chosen track, you will work in research teams with fellow students from the other tracks. 


  • Energy and Materials - The transition to the sustainable use of energy and materials
  • Environmental Change and Ecosystems - The suitable use of land and water
  • Earth System Governance - Governing the social changes needed for an environmentally accountable society
  • International Development - Sustainable development and living in the Global South

Sustainable development research

Our programme is closely affiliated with the  Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development,which is part of Utrecht University. The institute conducts research on a wide range of issues related to sustainable development. 

The cause and effect chains linking economic activities, ecological values and innovation serves as the point of departure for much of the research. Our research and teaching staff are active members of international networks and are at the forefront of their field. 

Career Prospects

The world needs people with comprehensive knowledge of environmental challenges. In this Master's programme you will become familiar with analytical and practical research skills, as well as strategies for intervention. 

This combination prepares you for a PhD programme or an academic-level position at consultancies, at research institutes, in government, in business or at NGOs. Our graduates work as first-class researchers in the field of sustainable development in academic and professional organisations. 


Accredited by the NVAO - Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Perspectives on Sustainable Development
  • Sustainability Modelling and Indicators
  • Research Design
  • Trandisciplinary Case Study
  • Tools for Energy and Materials Analysis
  • Analysing Governance Practices

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


120 ECTS


On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

You are welcome to apply for the Sustainable Development Master’s programme. Please take into account that this is a selective master. You will be considered for admission to the programme if you hold a University bachelor degree and can demonstrate a high level of knowledge, motivation and command of methods and skills in the field.

With regard to the educational requirements you should possess knowledge on:

  • Sustainability issues (drivers, pressures, impacts, responses)
  • Mathematics (basic algebra, functions, powers and roots)
  • Natural processes (earth system processes in soil, water, atmosphere, ecosystems)
  • Academic and research skills
  • Statistics (means, variance, probability tests (T-test), correlation)

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    20750 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 20750 EUR per year during 24 months.
  • EU/EEA

    2209 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 2209 EUR per year during 24 months.

Living costs for Utrecht

900 - 1450 EUR /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Our partners

Sustainable Development
Utrecht University


Go to your profile page to get personalised recommendations!