Sustainable Enterprise

To succeed in today’s competitive consumer environment, many businesses seek to not only provide high-quality products or services, but also do so in a way that is environmentally, socially and civically responsible. This commitment to making the world a better place can be good for business and is often warmly welcomed by consumers.

MBA@UNC students learn how companies can be both profitable and responsible by taking MBA sustainability courses in the Sustainable Enterprise concentration. Upon completion of this concentration, students will be prepared to launch their own commercial enterprises, help their companies establish environmentally and socially responsible policies, or even work for nonprofit organizations or advocacy groups to make commerce more conscientious.

Learning to Open Doors and Make a Difference

Through the Sustainable Enterprise MBA concentration, students learn about the "triple bottom line" of profits, society and the environment and how this principle can be used to inform a company’s approach to doing business. Several business models are examined in detail, including for-profit enterprises and nonprofit ventures, to provide students with valuable insight into how environmentally and socially responsible organizations can create value for stakeholders and have a positive impact on communities and the world.

Students discover how to identify new opportunities; develop business plans that prioritize environmental, social and civic awareness; maximize branding reach to secure new customers; securing sources of investment funding; establish responsible organizations in emerging markets; and use commerce as a powerful agent of change.

Suggested Electives

MBA@UNC enables professionals to tailor their educational experience by selecting any combination of available elective courses. Recommended elective courses for the Sustainable Enterprise concentration are:

  • Sustainable Enterprise
  • This course examines the origins, evolution, and current schools of thought around sustainable business practices. Study and discussion of sustainability as a theory of industrial development and accompanying models of commerce provides a context for understanding current models of business and its effects on other systems. The course also focuses on strategy, leadership, and innovation as applied to the Sustainable Enterprise. Through example as well as application of management theory, we will examine how today’s leaders are creating programs of transformation for competition in the “next” generation of industry and commerce.



  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Developing Economies
  • In this course, we explore how innovation and entrepreneurship (e.g. opportunity identification, evaluation, and exploitation) create individual and social wealth in developing country settings—while often simultaneously addressing major social problems. This course is about identifying opportunities and constraints that typify this context so that you can enter or return to a developing country to establish a venture—or lead and fund people who do so. It is also about using the power of business to fight poverty and other social problems. While many themes will surface, my objective is to help you learn more about business model variations and unique partnerships and how both play a critical role in venture success. Secondarily, we will discuss funding mechanisms.In an effort to innovate how we teach and present this course, we have filmed two cases and several guest speakers on location in Ethiopia. However, the topics in this course and the lessons from it absolutely relate to locations worldwide. We will work together to understand the similarities and differences between Ethiopia and other developing countries in Asia, Latin America, South America, Africa and elsewhere.



  • Global Marketing
  • This course examines specific issues involved in developing and executing marketing strategies on a global scale as opposed to a domestic scale. The course is intended to provide a thorough understanding of global marketing strategies, including:

    • Fundamental trends underlying convergence of world markets.
    • Pitfalls and challenges of entering other countries.
    • Ways to design global marketing strategies.
    • The impact of organization structure, management processes, culture, and people on global marketing strategy implementation.
    • The important and unique role emerging markets play in global marketing strategies.

    The course will help you achieve your career goals as you work – as virtually all of you will – in or with companies that are active in the international marketplace as well as domestic companies who face active international competitors.



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