Where To Get A Green MBA, And Beyond (pt. 1)

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Have you been pondering getting your feet wet in the ever expanding world of green business? Perhaps you’re already in it, to a degree, but want to go deeper. An MBA perhaps? Online MBA? Sustainable Development? Design? But where? Coming next Thursday, I’m going to tell you what I know from personal experience at one of the premier places today to get a sustainability focused MBA: Presidio School of Management.

But first, let me tell you what else I know, and I invite you to fill in the blanks. There are now several programs out there, such as the esteemed Bainbridge GraduateBainbridge Graduate Institute Institute up in Washington state, which has been around roughly the same amount of time as Presidio. They offer both a full MBA and two certificate programs, in Sustainable Business, Entrepreneurship, and Intrapreneurship. The certificate programs are aimed for those already in business, or who have already gotten an MBA.

The Green MBA program is another early entrant into this realm, and recently underwent what seems a helpful transformation, relocating to Dominican College in Green MBASan Rafael, California. They currently offer an MBA in Sustainable Enterprise. As before, they have a social justice/activist leaning, in addition to their business education. Judging by their website, the future looks promising for this program, with a stronger integration between academic learning and active engagement with the real world.

In Europe, a dynamic, creative, real world oriented business program of a different flavor exists, known as KaosPilots. I had the pleasure of meeting many of them while I was at Presidio, as they were in San Francisco for a semester, tasked with engaging with the local population, and creating their final projects while there. It’s a decidedly Nordic styled program, with a quirkiness throughout, a lot of creativity, and as their name suggests, getting comfortable with navigating the chaos that is our world.

Another strong newcomer is the soon to be launched MBA in Design Strategy at the California College of the Arts in Oakland, California. This program, spearheaded in part by my former Presidio classmate, Nathan Shedroff, a multi-talented Experience Strategist, author, and teacher, looks to be quite impressive, if their introductory description is any indication:

The innovative MBA in Design Strategy, which will enroll its first class of students in fall 2008, unites the studies of design, finance, and organizational management in a unique curriculum aimed at providing students with tools and strategies to address today’s complex and interconnected market. The program’s approach encompasses performance, strategy, innovation, and the encouragement of meaningful, sustainable social change.

Numerous a la carte classes and programs can also be found out there, such as the Sustainable Development offerings at Chico State University.Chico State University

Next Thursday I will go into some depth about Presidio School of Management, a program that continues to evolve and become an ever stronger offering, from which I myself have benefited, graduating in their third cohort.

What else is out there, in terms of sustainability focused education? Please share!

About the Author

Paul Smith is a sustainable business innovator, the founder of GreenSmith Consulting, and has an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio School of Management in San Francisco. He creates interest in, conversations around, and business for green (and greening) companies, via social media. Who he has and wants to work with includes consumer, media, clean tech, NGOs, social ventures, and museums. For more on GreenSmith Consulting, see www.greensmithconsulting.com He also writes for Triple Pundit www.triplepundit.com