The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by the United Nations in 2015 seek to address the greatest challenges humanity faces: poverty, inequality, hunger, climate change, pandemics and diseases, and ecosystem and biodiversity losses. The Sustainability and Development (SusDev) specialization will help you understand, analyze, and address these global challenges.
“Social and environmental well-being depends on our collective ability to achieve and go beyond the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals,” says Dr. Arun Agrawal, the Samuel Trask Dana Professor at SEAS and SusDev co-coordinator. “To effectively meet sustainability and development challenges, students will need to identify decision-making priorities, design feasible interventions, that consider the key synergies and tradeoffs among sustainable development goals.”
With the launch of the SusDev specialization, SEAS will be among the leading programs in the country and across the globe that train students to achieve the SDGs and their relationship to sustainability and development—and indeed to think beyond them.
For current students interested in pursuing this specialization in the winter 2021 term, SusDev can be added only as a second specialization in addition to their existing choice for a specialization. In the fall 2021 term, SusDev will become available to all students as their only or as a second specialization. For additional information about this new specialization and the online SusDev MasterTrack certificate, check out the full story about the specialization, and review these SusDev FAQs.
WHY SUSTAINABILITY AND DEVELOPMENT?
By completing the SusDev specialization, you will become uniquely prepared to meet the rapidly growing need for trained professionals and researchers across the spectrum of sustainability and development sectors at local, national, and global scales.
With an in-depth focus on understanding the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals—which increasing numbers of global organizations and governments have adopted—the SusDev specialization will help you:
- Develop expertise in conceptual and theoretical issues associated with sustainability and development
- Understand the real-world practices that have helped improve the core areas of wellbeing and have supported major sustainability transitions through new institutions, policies, and behaviors
- Learn the methods and skills necessary to implement new visions and practices for greater sustainability and wellbeing*
SusDev will emphasize collaboration across multiple disciplines, from the social and ecological sciences to engineering, public health, policy, education, and business.
SusDev Specialization Skills
- Impact evaluation
- Program evaluation
- Project management
- Cost-benefit analysis
- Institutional analysis
- Life cycle analysis
- Gender analysis
- Sustainable intensification
- Conflict management
- Transition management
- Adaptation and transformation
- Environmental and resource governance
CAREERS AND SELECT EMPLOYERS
Expected career opportunities for students graduating with the SusDev specialization include those in government in and outside the United States (local, state, and federal levels), non-governmental and nonprofit organizations, small companies and large corporations, think tanks and policy centers, management and consulting firms, and international and domestic civil society organizations. SusDev will provide you with information about potential careers in these sectors, and help you to prepare for the job market.