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Sustainability and Economics

With climate change, deforestation, biodiversity loss and other major environmental concerns, sustainability has become a hot topic for international organisations and governments all around the world. This interdisciplinary minor will equip you with the necessary tools from economic, environmental and political approaches to acquire a general understanding of the subject and to analyse, evaluate and propose environmental policy and governance measures.

After successfully finishing this minor, you will have acquired thorough knowledge on the theoretical and practical applications of sustainability and economics. You can use this to participate in and contribute to policy discussions.

Moreover, you will obtain an understanding of the (dis)advantages of a variety of policies measures, discuss possible implications and can guide dialogues about these topics towards a better and more sustainable world. Students who take this minor will have a competitive edge when seeking employment in the field of sustainability in the private sector, public sector, NGOs and international organizations.


The programme will be updated on 4 April 2022.

The minor contains of 30 EC and can be completed in 1 semester. It includes 2 compulsory courses of 6 EC each. In addition you have to take 3 electives. In the application process you have to rank the electives from your favourite to your least-favourite. Due to the popularity of this minor, we cannot guarantee you will be granted your top 3. 

  • Environmental Economics
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  • Green Economy and Society
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  • Restricted-course elective: Cities and Change
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  • Restricted-course elective: Economics of Climate Change *
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  • Restricted-course elective: Circular Economy
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  • Restricted-course elective: Post-growth Entrepreneurship*
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  • Restricted-course elective: Degrowth
  • Restricted-course elective: Natural Resource Economics*
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Find detailed course descriptions in the Course Catalogue (updated in June)

* these are new courses which you cannot find in the current course catalogue.

Natural resource economics: In this course, you will investigate the links between human societies and natural resources through the lens of economics. The course will be organised around six broad topics: (1) sustainability; (2) depletable and replenishable resources; (3) biodiversity and ecosystem management; (4) market failures and instruments concerning natural resources; (5) health and the environment; and (6) development and natural resources.

Climate change economics: This course offers an introduction into the economics of climate change. The course builds on insights from both behavioral and public economics and covers literature on expected impacts, potential policy responses, and perceptions thereof. 

Post-growth entrepreneurship: This course introduces students to literature on entrepreneurs that have a different aim than maximizing returns to shareholders. The course will cover topics such as circularity, collaboration, open access, and sufficiency from a business perspective.

Entry requirements

  • Successful completion of the first year of a research university Bachelor's programme (WO) or University of Applied Sciences programme (HBO) is required for participation.
  • This minor is not open to students who have already completed one of the courses as part of their Bachelor’s programme.
  • No prior knowledge in Economics or Politics is required.

Application and Admission

The application deadline has passed and we will no longer accept applications.

More info and contact

For more general information about taking a minor, visit the student website about minors at UvA Economics and Business. Or you can contact the Education Desk.

Facts & Figures
Mode Full-time
Credits 30 ECTS, 5 months
Language of instruction English
Starts in September