BSc Environment and Sustainable Development with Economics

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BSc Environment and Sustainable Development with Economics (formally BSc Environmental Policy with Economics) enables students to benefit from LSE's excellent reputation within the field of economics while instructing them in the application of economic knowledge and skills in environmental decision-making.

Research-informed teaching ensures that students are exposed to state-of-the-art knowledge

Understanding the interaction of economic and environmental processes is critical for the effective design of environmental policies. Students will learn about conceptual and applied aspects of economy-environment linkages.

Research-informed teaching ensures that students are exposed to state-of-the-art knowledge and the latest developments in environmental governance and environmental economics.

Our aim is to equip graduates with the relevant competencies for employment or postgraduate study in environmental policy and economics. The increasing use of economic analysis in environmental decision-making has put a premium on individuals with relevant knowledge, understanding and skills.

In Year 1 students receive a grounding in environmental change and sustainable development, combined with appropriate training in economics and mathematical methods.

The programme broadens out in Year 2 to offer core courses in environmental science and society and applied environmental economics. Students are offered a wide range of options within and outside the department to pursue their own academic interests in economics, policy-making and politics. There is also an opportunity to participate in an international field trip.

In Year 3, core courses in environmental governance provide more in-depth understanding of the key themes in the degree, while students are offered a wide array of optional courses in economics and geographical analysis. Students may also pursue their own individual research project in the final year.

BSc Environment and Sustainable Devleopment with Economics at LSE BSc Environment and Sustainable Devleopment with Economics at LSE
An introduction to the programme by staff and students. LSE Film & Audio

What can I do with a degree in Environment and Sustainable Development with Economics?

This is one of our flagship degrees and our students enjoy outstanding success after graduation.

The rigorous LSE training in economics, in conjunction with the interdisciplinary feature of the programme, gives our graduates a competitive advantage in the labour market and allows them to choose from a wide range of career paths.

Our graduates have launched careers in international organisations, governments, consultancies and financial firms. Some have pursued further study, as the programme provides excellent preparation for postgraduate studies in Environmental Studies, Economics, Public Policy, Development, Management and related fields.

Why study with us?

Top-ranked department

We're ranked 2nd in the world in the latest QS World University subject rankings and 3rd in the Complete University Guide subject tables. A range of measures contribute to the rankings, including student satisfaction, academic reputation and career prospects.

World-class academics

You'll be taught by lecturers at the cutting edge of research. Our staff provide advice to governments, international organisations and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Students work with world-class experts who bring unique insights from the latest research to their teaching.

Emphasis on teaching quality

We place special importance on the quality of our students’ learning experience. A particular feature of our teaching is on the development of transferrable skills – such as data analysis, team work and presentation skills. You'll also receive regular support from a dedicated academic mentor (who is a staff member in the department) throughout your studies.

Outstanding career prospects

Graduates have an excellent track record of employment. See the most recent available data.

Facilities for you

You'll enjoy access to one of the largest libraries in the world devoted to the economic and social sciences, the LSE Library, together with its extensive range of electronic learning resources, and the award-winning Saw Swee Hock Student Centre.

Experience London

LSE is centrally located in one of the world’s global cities. The City – financial heart of London - the historic Inns of Court, and Westminster are all on our doorstep, providing opportunities for internships/future career pathways. Countless cultural venues are within walking distance and our Halls of Residence are located in some of the most exciting areas of London, including Covent Garden, Bloomsbury and Trafalgar Square.

Public lecture programme

LSE attracts many high-profile external speakers including policy makers and political leaders from around the globe. Public lectures are free and open to all. Past speakers include Kofi Annan, Tony Blair, Angelina Jolie, Bill Clinton, Milton Friedman, Nelson Mandela, and Noam Chomsky to name a few.

Global community

LSE's student population is a vibrant and cosmopolitan community. Our students tell us that they gain a great deal from studying alongside, and learning from, people from a wide range of nationalities, cultures and backgrounds.

Student testimonials

Vitaliy Komar

vitaliyWhy did you choose the course/LSE? 

I have not found any other university that would offer such a combination of environmentally related content and economics. The experience of the faculty and leadership in the real world sustainability debate has also been very important.

What has been the highlight of your LSE experience? 

The research methods course field trip to New York has been unforgettable.

How are you planning to use your degree for your future career? 

I aim to work on sustainability issues in the corporate governance and finance industry. My degree has not only equipped me with the necessary skills and knowledge for that, but also helped me get in touch with some of the leading professionals in the field.

Sum up your experience in 3 words

Exciting, social, intense.

Tata International Social Entrepreneurship Scheme

The Tata International Social Entrepreneurship Scheme (ISES) scheme is a unique partnership between Tata and leading universities, including LSE. It is managed and administered by LSE Careers and the India Observatory.

The ISES scheme offers LSE students the opportunity to undertake 8 week projects at the Tata Group in India. These projects have either a development, social enterprise or CSR focus and involve a significant research element.

Elina Vaananen and Tobias Kruse took part in the scheme and share their experiences:


Elina Vaananen

In participating in the Tata International Social Entrepreneurship Scheme (Tata ISES), I worked at Tata Quality Management Services in Pune and Mumbai in a project on ‘The Necessity and Preparedness of Tata Companies to Adapt to Climate Change’. My project focused on three Tata Companies; Tata Chemicals, Tata Motors and Tata Power. After an initial literature review on international good adaptation practices, I conducted interviews with relevant stakeholders, including chief sustainability officers, enterprise risk management people as well as people working with product design and innovation. Essentially, I assessed the extent that existing risk management processes were capturing climate risk. In addition, I reviewed what business opportunities arising from climate change were being harnessed by the three companies.

I felt that my previous experience in research and interviewing was very helpful in the initial stages of project design. The project was very much my own; I had a lot of freedom in planning and conducting it and thus being comfortable with independent work was essential. Having studied a BSc in Environmental Policy, I was already familiar with the broad institutional frameworks underlying climate change as well as with the basics of the adaptation discourse. This familiarity helped in assimilating the relevant information quickly. The private sector perspective into adaptation was new to me: it was very interesting to approach the issue from a business point of view as opposed to the public or community viewpoint. The Indian context added its own flavour to adaptation. It was fascinating to gain an understanding of the strict regulatory oversight that the energy and fertilizer industries are subject to.

The Tata ISES experience was a hugely rewarding one. The internship reaffirmed my interest in environmental risk and supported my decision to undertake postgraduate studies in environmental law and economics at the University of Cambridge. Having learned so much and met the most wonderful people, I will certainly return to India, where so many innovative, environment-related initiatives are currently taking place.


Tobias Kruse

I was working for Tata Capital in Mumbai and Bangalore on a pilot project to reduce energy consumption and carbon footprint for Tata Capital’s corporate offices.

At first, I had to make myself familiar with where in Tata Capital’s office most energy is being consumed. Secondly, I had to find out how energy consumption and the carbon footprint can be reduced for their offices. Subsequently, I contacted numerous different Bangalore-based providers that were specialized in the respective technologies. I contacted solar PV-providers, LED lighting experts, AC-companies, green roof/wall gardeners and experts for smart computer software which reduces energy consumption from desktop computers. Tata Capital did however not only want to do a ‘green initiative’, but also wanted a profitable investment and was particularly interested in the ROIs of the respective projects. Thus, this project went beyond a normal CSR activity.

My degree in BSc Environmental Policy with Economics has been helpful for having a good background knowledge about the complexity of climate change and its linkage with development-related issues.

I believe this internship was an excellent preparation for a career in consultancy since I had to meet different providers for ‘green’ products, had to evaluate which one provided the best ROI for the company and eventually present my results to the management team.

I also believe that this internship was a good preparation for a career in research since I had to conduct my independent research in a different cultural environment about possible sustainability interventions and locate the various providers. Finally, I compiled a report for the management team which explained the importance of climate change mitigation for India and compiled various suggestions to reduce Tata Capital’s energy consumption and carbon footprint.


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