Sustainable Development MSc (online)

Key Information

Taught 100% online, study Sussex’s world renowned Sustainable Development MSc at a time and place that suits you.

Course start dates:
This course is currently going through University validation and  is expected to start in summer 2019. To be informed when applications open, please complete our enquiry form.


in the world for Development Studies (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018)

Top 25

UK university (Complete University Guide 2019)

TEF Silver

(2017 Teaching Excellence Framework)

Course overview

In September 2015, the United Nations adopted 17 global Goals for Sustainable Development (SDGs), to end poverty and hunger while achieving gender equality, inclusive innovation, sustainable industrialization, responsible consumption, institutions for peace-building, and urgent climate action, all by 2030. For these goals to be realised, sustainability transformations are required at multiple levels in society, in all parts of the world, driven by knowledgeable and skillful social entrepreneurs, engaged scholars and political activists. Sustainable Development MSc (online) at the University of Sussex is geared toward developing the requisite skills and knowledge, necessary to meet the formidable challenges facing the SDGs’ realisation.

The University of Sussex is at the forefront of academic study in sustainable development. Taught by leading academics and practitioners, you will learn how to apply theories of socio-economic transformations (power and agency), as well as social and technological innovations for sustainability, to real-world development policies and practices.

Using a strong international perspective, the course will encourage you to explore multiple perspectives, policies and practices of sustainable development. With employability firmly in mind, you will learn to do independent and collective work, exploring sustainable development tactics and strategies for international agencies, NGOs, and public and private organisations, operating across the world.

This course is part-time and can be completed in a minimum of two years and maximum of four, with students having the opportunity to pause their studies if their work or life commitments require. 

Why choose this course

Ranked as the top University in the world for Development Studies (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017), this course will give you access to motivated teachers and accomplished researchers from Sussex’s Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), School of Global Studies and the Sussex Energy Group.

With proven employability success, you will join a prestigious and global group of graduates employed in policy, consultancy, government, NGOs and firms across the world.

This online masters course is designed to be delivered flexibly, fitting around your time and financial commitments. Modules start every two months, which you can pause whenever you need to.


The modules listed below provide a sample of modules and subject areas covered on this course and are currently subject to change;

  • Governing and Using Technology for Development
  • Innovation and Economic Development
  • Perspectives, Methods and Skills for Science, Technology and Innovation Studies
  • Policy Making and Policy Analysis
  • Science, Technology and Innovations: Markets, Firms and Policies
  • Sustainable Development: Perspectives, Policies and Practices
  • Energy and Development
  • Energy Policy and Sustainability
  • Governing Energy Transitions
  • Infrastructure, Innovation and Sustainability
  • Innovation for Sustainability
  • Innovation in the Creative Economy
  • Introduction to Statistical Research Methods
  • Management of Risk
  • Network Analysis and Infographics
  • Quantitative Methods for Science, Technology and Innovation Studies

Typical entry requirements

A lower second-class (2.2) undergraduate honours degree* or above from any UK university or international equivalent.

*This course is currently going through university validation; entry requirements are subject to change

Further information on applying for online Masters courses. 

English Language requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English (and whose first degree was not taught in English) are required to obtain and provide evidence of English proficiency at IELTS Level 6.5.

Fees, funding and scholarships

This course is currently going through the University of Sussex’s validation process which includes the setting of course fees. Once the fees for this course have been set information will be available on this page, you can also receive updates on this course by registering your interest to study Sustainable Development MSc (online) at Sussex.

The University of Sussex offers a scholarship for UK residents which may be applied toward the cost of your studies. For more information on this scholarship, including eligibility, please contact our Admissions Team.

Please visit our fees and funding page for more information on funding for master’s students.

Science, Policy and Research Unit (SPRU)

University of Sussex, Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) – Masters courses

Study online with the University of Sussex from anywhere in the world

Contact us

To speak directly with a dedicated online Admissions Advisor call

+44 (0) 1273 019311