Logo BusinessBecause - The business school voice
mobile search icon

Berkeley Haas Launches Joint MBA And Climate Solutions Degree

The new joint degree from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business helps early-career professionals tackle sustainability and climate challenges

Thu Jan 11 2024

Extreme weather events dominated the news in 2023, and the IPCC reports that the last decade has been the hottest period for the planet in the last 125,000 years.

The University of California’s Haas School of Business is responding to this climate crisis by launching a combined MBA and Master in Climate Solutions (MCS) degree, which will welcome its first class in fall 2024.

Berkeley Haas MBA/MCS degree: An overview

Operated in partnership with Berkeley’s Rausser College of Natural Resources, the two-and-a-half-year degree is designed for early-career professionals aiming for the top levels of business leadership.

It will give students a grounding in key business concepts, as well as topics related to sustainability in business, including:

  • Climate data science
  • Carbon accounting
  • Lifecycle analysis
  • Technological and nature-based solutions

“This new program will provide a breadth of skill sets, equipping our grads to lead in building a sustainable, low-carbon future,” says Ann Harrison, dean of Berkeley Haas.

How does the MBA/MCS degree differ from the Berkeley Haas MBA?

As a combined degree, the MBA/MCS from Berkeley Haas sees students split their time between the Haas School of Business and Rausser College of Natural Resources.

Instead of spending two years at Haas, only the first year of the MBA/MCS is spent at the business school. During this time, students will complete MBA core coursework, including modules in leadership, marketing, finance, data analysis, and more.

After that, they will move to MCS courses at Rausser, where they receive training in climate and environmental sciences.

The program includes a semester-long capstone course that allows students to partner with organizations across the business, government, and non-profit sectors.

Like traditional MBA students, the MBA/MCS will also complete two summer internships, allowing for immersion in their chosen discipline and the formation of strong networks.

Faculty at Berkeley Haas believe teaching sustainability principles to MBAs is of paramount importance.

“Haas and Rausser both have such impressive track records in climate research,” says Michele de Nevers, managing director of the Office of Sustainability and Climate Change at Haas.

“This program combines our offerings at the master’s level, with a keen focus on professional students, who are clearly positioned to make an immediate impact, and who serve a critical role as translators of academic insights and enacting these insights in the world.”

Background to the Berkeley Haas MBA/MCS degree

The formation of the combined MBA/MCS degree at Berkeley Haas comes amid a wave of efforts from the school to address the climate crisis and create sustainable business leaders.

The school recently created the Office of Sustainability and Climate Change and revamped its core MBA curriculum to include thinking about sustainability.

The MBA/MCS joins Berkeley Haas’s suite of dual degree programs, which include:

  • MBA/MPH (public health)
  • MBA/Meng (engineering)
  • MBA/JD (law)

To find out more about joint MBA degrees, read our article about the benefits of a double degree.

Image © Corey Seeman on Flickr, reproduced under this license