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Sustainability Jobs | What Careers In Sustainability Are Available Today?

Find out what sustainability jobs are available in today’s business landscape, with insights from four grads who have launched careers in sustainability

Mon Apr 22 2024

From politics to pop culture, everyone is talking about sustainability. 

In a world marred by geo-political tension and economic uncertainty, sustainability ranks among the most profound issues facing businesses today. In a recent survey, organizations listed the climate crisis second behind the economy in terms of their primary concerns. 

As companies work out strategies, develop innovations, and reorient business models, the need for capable business leaders with both specialist sustainability knowledge and an understanding of business fundamentals rises. 

As a result, sustainability jobs are growing in number. And, with business school students increasingly prioritizing high-impact careers, demand is also on the rise. 

So, what careers in sustainability are available today? To find out, we spoke with four alumni from business schools across Europe who landed sustainability jobs after graduation. 

Sustainability Jobs | Become a specialist consultant 

The Big Four accounting and professional services firms—Deloitte, PwC, EY, KPMG—have long been an attractive prospect for business school graduates. Each year they rank among the top employers of MBA graduates. 


At the forefront of global auditing practices and leaders when it comes to providing clients with expert consulting services, these firms are also heavily influenced by the growing importance of sustainability across the business landscape. That’s why the Big Four are increasingly hiring in sustainability-related roles. 

In 2022, Michelle Sommer (pictured) landed a role with PwC Germany as a senior associate in sustainability services. Then enrolled in the Mannheim Business School Part-Time MBA program, she was attracted to the opportunity, feeling it would help her make an impact in her career. 

“I always had the urge to help companies to do better and consider the impact they have, or could have, with their business. Therefore my personal values are very much aligned with those that are sustainability driven,” she explains. 

While at business school Michelle specialized in sustainability and impact management, she feels this gave her the specialized knowledge she needed to land and excel in a sustainability job. 

“Due to the insights I gained into the sustainability sphere—which are the hot topics of the moment [that] we need to discuss in politics or the economy—as well as the network I acquired throughout the program, I was able to become a proactive part of the overall sustainable business transformation,” she says. 

Reflecting on her experience so far, Michelle feels there are ample opportunities to work in sustainability consulting: “There is a need for people who are driven to implement sustainable business practices in the economy, because many companies are struggling, missing the resources and knowledge to do so.” 

Sustainability Jobs | Become a strategic change maker 

Whether it’s through cleaning up supply chains or developing entirely new products, for many companies sustainable transition occurs at a business model level. Driving this kind of strategic change requires a holistic understanding of core business concepts and strong leadership skills. 


Nina Fechler (pictured) spent much of her career in leadership roles across a number of sectors, where she led cross-functional teams and implemented broad strategies. This proved foundational in preparing for her current role as director of the Global Circular Economy Program at speciality chemical company, Evonik. 

“I am a purpose-driven person, which is why making an impact is an essential element of my career,” she explains. 

To build on this, Nina enrolled in the Executive MBA program at ESMT Berlin to enhance her skill set and refine her ability to identify and implement change opportunities. 

“I experienced the Executive MBA at ESMT Berlin as more of a personal growth journey than just a course. In this sense, business school has sharpened my strategic thinking, my capability to connect the dots, and my decision-making skills in uncertainty,” she adds. 

“In the Circular Economy, for example, it is about creating a fundamentally different way of doing business, growing connections among companies that have never directly worked together before, and working on industry solutions for the challenges of our times.” 

Sustainability Jobs | Become an industry expert 

While, historically, practicing sustainability was an option exercised by a minority of firms, today an increasingly sophisticated regulatory landscape means it’s no longer a choice. 


Developments such as the EU Taxonomy and the UK’s Sustainability Disclosure Requirements (SDRs) now force companies to be transparent in their sustainability reporting. As a result, failure to implement change carries an existential threat. 

Many companies require specialist expertise to navigate this continuously evolving legal environment. That’s why advisory firms are on hand to provide expert guidance. 

Christina Torgersen (pictured) landed a role with one such firm, Amesto, in 2023. A graduate from BI Norwegian Business School with a Master of Science in Business majoring in Leadership and Change, she now helps firms identify the laws and regulations that apply to them in her role as sustainability advisor.  

“Growing up in a household that embraced sustainable practices, such as sharing and re-using, instilled in me a great appreciation for sustainable living. This appreciation, linked with my desire to drive meaningful and lasting change, led me to pursue a career in sustainability,” she says. 

Now a year into the role, Christina feels attending business school was an important step in providing her with the expertise required to help firms navigate complex challenges. 

“It has equipped me with leadership skills and a deep understanding of market dynamics and corporate behavior that are crucial for driving organizational change, enabling me to lead and implement sustainable practices effectively. By understanding the underlying economics, I can also propose solutions that not only reduce environmental impact but also make economic sense.”

Sustainability Jobs | Become an impact entrepreneur 

Within the business world, the role of the entrepreneur is to identify a problem and find a solution. Done effectively, this can lead to profound innovations including the invention of the mobile phone and the development of DNA testing. 


Faced with a problem as large as the climate crisis, the role of entrepreneurs in driving a shift toward a greener economy cannot be understated. Today, sustainable entrepreneurs are developing solutions to issues including waste recycling, reusable plastics, and clean water provision. 

For Anneleen Van Meervenne (pictured), the central problem she aims to solve is the negative impact of food production. With her startup, KRIKET, launched in 2018 alongside her brother, she has developed products including muesli bars that use cricket powder as a protein source. 

Anneleen’s entrepreneurial venture aims to bring consumption of insect-based food—which has a better nutritional profile and lower climate impact than meat-based products—into the mainstream. 

“How we do that is by creating very accessible products that you don't have to cook and don't have to prepare. You just open it, and you can eat it straight away,” she explains.  

Anneleen, who graduated from a Master’s in Management at Vlerick Business School in 2014, feels that attending business school gave her the all-important network that many entrepreneurs rely on to get their startups off the ground. 

“Firstly, I think the lifelong friendships that I got from my year at Vlerick are indispensable, and I am still in contact with many people. The emotional support I get whilst having a startup has been really valuable for me. A lot of them also launched their own business, so they understand the struggle.

“Secondly, I also learned how important networking is, that’s where I got my first contacts into the corporate world as well.”

These are just some of the many opportunities that are available in the sustainability sphere today. With business degrees providing a combination of knowledge, experience, and connections, enrolling at business school can provide a route into a high-impact career.