Online Sustainability Certificate Program at UVM

Grossman School of Business

A Transformational Online Experience by the UVM Grossman School of Business

Do you think the world is too important for business-as-usual and want to help lead your organization to a more sustainable future?

Companies are struggling to innovate fast enough in a turbulent, disruptive world and emerging leaders aren’t being developed at a sufficient rate to drive the much-needed innovation.

Changing times demand new approaches, and conventional approaches to executive education are often too abstract, inflexible, and expensive. The Grossman School of Business has collaborated with WholeWorks to develop the Leading Sustainable Innovation Professional Certificate, a modern, online learning experience that builds the critical competencies needed to lead sustainable innovation and change. This certificate promotes learning transfer with a unique combination of experiential elements and can be easily scaled to accelerate organizational transformation.

Simulation-Based Approach

Over 8 weeks, Leading Sustainable Innovation program participants will work in diverse teams, across functions, geographies, and sectors to engage in a realistic, highly sophisticated, and immersive simulation experience that turns online learning upside down with its radical approach to user engagement. Participants are in the driver’s seat, generating novel solutions to complex problems as they transform a conventional business into a sustainable one. Simulation teams include management and stakeholder roles and face compelling scenarios, challenges, and tensions across the roles. Leaders learn by doing as they navigate a complex change process.

Our simulation-based approach is a profound departure from most online executive education programs. Traditional leadership programs emphasize content first and present it in a prescribed order. They may then include a simulation to reinforce the learning about that content. We use the opposite approach: emphasize the simulation as a leadership “practice field” and use content to support that learning experience.

Using core content from UVM’s top-ranked Sustainable Innovation MBA program and WholeWorks’ immersive virtual practice field, the Leading Sustainable Innovation Professional Certificate helps develop:

  • Business Ecosystems Thinking: Expanding your view to incorporate a broader, multi-stakeholder perspective and anticipate long-term consequences of business decisions
  • Collaboration and Teamwork: Working across boundaries to find innovative solutions to the most challenging problems
  • Sustainability Acumen: Applying the concepts and principles of sustainability and corporate social responsibility to make business decisions that benefit people, profit, and planet
  • Financial/Business Acumen: Developing the skills to effectively make the business case for sustainability in your organization

What Participants Will Learn

  • Articulate and integrate win-win scenarios across all relevant operations, benefiting the bottom line while delivering sustainable business solutions
  • Develop a strong business case to overcome organizational skepticism, while implementing clear action steps promoting short- and long-term strategy
  • Adopt a broad, systems-thinking approach to anticipate changes in government regulations, consumer behavior, and stakeholder concerns
  • Link competitive advantage and corporate social responsibility to create new strategic opportunities while minimizing risks

Who Should Attend

This program is designed for emerging and high-potential leaders in business, NGOs, government, or entrepreneurial firms who:

  • Have 3 to 10+ years of expertise, including supervisory/management roles (management experience not necessary, however—individual contributors are welcome)
  • Seek to progress from a functional/technical role to leading teams across functions or sectors
  • Work for an organization facing a disruptive/changing business environment
  • Want to incorporate sustainability into their business decisions and drive innovation

Benefits of Leading Sustainable Innovation

Benefits to Your Organization

  • Accelerate your progress toward sustainability
  • Integrate Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) initiatives with core business drivers to create value
  • Experience a positive future: create value for business and society
  • Surface innovative business opportunities
  • Increase agility across your organization; build resilience
  • Leverage talent development resources using a scalable, cost-effective approach

Benefits to Participants

  • Build competencies needed to lead sustainable innovation and change
  • Experience a positive future: create value for business and society
  • Deepen sense of purpose at work
  • Expand personal network and access to innovative partners
  • Clarify leadership role within your organization; gain visibility
  • Receive a certificate from UVM Grossman School of Business that advances your career

Whether committed to creating change from the vantage point of business, government, or NGOs, UVM’s award-winning programs move beyond conventional views of sustainability. The social and environmental challenges we face call for nothing less.