Top 10 Masters in Corporate Social Responsibility

During the last few decades, the corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become an important factor influencing the development of companies, affecting their brand image and profits. CSR deals with the impact of corporate activities on the environment and society, and pushes companies to adopt socially responsible policies that support charitable activities, social actions, and offer donations. In some cases, corporations also provide support to relief causes and for disaster affected areas.  This article provides the top 10 master programs intended for young professionals and all of those who wish to pursue a career in CSR and responsible management.

#1 LLM Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability, University of Law, UK

Founded in 1876, the University of Law (ULAW) is the UK’s largest law school offering high-quality degrees for lawyers and non-lawyers. With a student satisfaction rate of 97%, the university is ranked 1st in the United Kingdom. The LLM in Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability is a postgraduate degree that is offered on campus and online, as well as full- or part-time.

In this programme, you will develop in-depth knowledge of CSR and Sustainability in practice, including an ability to apply complex legal rules to real-world problems. This course will set you up for employment within the corporate governance field specializing in CSR and sustainability. Graduates of the degree work for renowned companies, NGOs, governments or the United Nations.

#2 Master’s Program in Social Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability, the CMI Research Institute, Spain

The CMI Business School offers Master’s in CRS and Sustainability for all individuals who want to study a specialized program reference in the CSR sector. The program is intended for business administrators, managers, NGOs, public officials, entrepreneurs, students, and all of those who wish to develop their skills to achieve a positive impact on nature and society.

By employing an innovative teaching methodology, the program combines theory, practice, and case studies adapted to meet requirements of an unique study plan that emphasizes the experience and global development of the student. The program can be taken full-time and part-time or students can get engaged through online learning, depending on their availability. CMI provides scholarships that cover 50 per cent of each program and are aimed at students with excellent academic records. A part of these scholarships is intended for students coming from developing countries, or with disabilities, with the goal of promoting equal opportunities in different groups.

#3 MSc in International Business Management and Corporate Social Responsibility, Oxford Brookes University, the United Kingdom

During this MSC program students learn how to identify, analyze and evaluate a number of issues related to business and to develop suitable responses to these issues. By specializing in CSR, students will acquire skills to develop tools to address challenges in specific industries, while linking theory to practice.

The program offers full time attendance for 12 months of part-time for 24 months for the UK and EU students. It is suitable for all of those who wish to advance their knowledge and understanding of business and management and who come from a variety of educational backgrounds. During the programs, students will study a combination of compulsory and elective courses, and choose to complete either a dissertation, a synoptic research project or a client based research project. At the end of the program, students will be ready for pursuing international careers in sustainability and corporate governance, either with non-profit organizations or commercial companies.

#4 MSc in Management and Corporate Sustainability, Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield University, the United Kingdom

MSc in Management and Corporate Sustainability offered by the Cranfield School of Management teaches students on the practicalities of how businesses and companies integrate sustainability into their core business strategy and purpose. It provides students with skills necessary for all senior leadership positions. In 2019, the program ranked as 7th in the UK and 44th in Europe in the Financial Times European Business School rankings.

The course is intended for graduates interested in the social, environmental and economic impacts that corporations and organizations have on the world and that aspire to integrate sustainability into their future careers, as well as early career professionals who wish to transition into a sustainability-focused roles. The program lasts one year and comprises 12 modules, seven covering general management skills and five specializing in corporate responsibility. The courses are taught by world experts and students are given an opportunity to gain insight into sustainability in practice through master classes from specialists in the field and companies such as Marks & Spencer at their head offices.

#5 Master’s Degree in Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility, Jaume I University, Spain

The general objective of this program is to study the concepts of CSR and sustainability and their multiple dimensions in more depth, while putting an emphasis on the applicability of existing management tools and strategies that are applied on different levels in organizations.

This master’s programs trains and educates professionals and equips them with skills they apply in practice when it comes to ethnics, sustainability, and social and environmental responsibility in different business models. The program lasts one year full-time with distance learning. The completion of this program opens doors for those who complete it to pursue high management positions in private companies, corporations, as well as the public sector.

#6 MA in Responsible Management, Institute Corporate Responsibility Management, Steinbeis University , Germany

Steinbeis University in Berlin has been offering the master’s program in Responsible Management since 2010. At the core of the program is the Project Competence Concepts, through which students merge theory with practice, to be able to implement them in their workplaces later on.

The program lasts 18 months and aims to embed CSR, sustainability, business ethics and social entrepreneurship principles into mainstream business activity and corporate structure. The program is designed around the idea that ‘’business is not an enemy to sustainable progress but a tool’’. Students around the world are welcomed. Entire program is taught in English; however, students can choose to write exams and the master thesis either in English or German.

#7 Strategic Management for Global Business, Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Italy

This master program provides students with the knowledge and skills required to become successful and innovative managers, consultants and entrepreneurs. Through this program, students develop the ability to manage complexity in global businesses and acquire knowledge on how to make those businesses sustainable.

The courses are based on both practical and interactive teaching methods and workshops led by international experts and managers from multinational companies and start-ups. Students are also provided with an opportunity to participate in developing a bespoke Action Project, such as internship, consultancy project or development of company’s business plan. By the end of the program, students learn how to leverage on the issues of CSR, sustainability and impact management and turn them into socially responsible business opportunities.

#8 MSc in Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability, Guildhall School of Business and Law, London Metropolitan University

This master’s program offered by the London Metropolitan University is intended for middle management professionals and technical specialist who are already working in CSR and sustainability and who have an interest in expanding their knowledge.

The course includes a consultancy projects where students visit sites, give their hands on experience in the area of CSR, and by the end of the program, gain a deeper understanding of the complex area of CSR and become a fully informed sustainability professionals. Students are assessed through a mixture of practical projects, presentations, coursework and exam, while the dissertation is a 60 credit research project based on an area of student’s interest.

#9 MA in Ethics (Corporate Responsibility), Dublin City University, Ireland

This MA program is run by the DCU School of Theology, Philosophy, and Music and the Institute of Ethics. It requires no philosophy or ethics background. By completing this program, students obtain knowledge and skills needed to manage and design the social, ethical and governance aspects of business operation and decision-making.

During the courses, students learn how to apply business frameworks and ethics to the responsible management of organizations. Lectures are based on the theoretical perspective of business ethics and the practical management tools. After a successful completion, students will be able to demonstrate knowledge on a broad range of ethical principles and theories, including CSR, corporate governance and stakeholder accountability.

#10 MSc in Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability, Birkbeck University of London, the United Kingdom

This master’s program deepens understanding and stimulates critical thinking in the areas of corporate responsibility and sustainability. During this program, students have the opportunity to practice decision making and problem solving on a range of social, economic and environmental issues that affect the operation of organizations.

Academic staff who teach the courses are active researchers in the fields of international business and strategy, the management of innovation and entrepreneurship, human resource management, corporate management and accounting. During the program, students will have access to Moodle, an online learning resource where all information and materials related to the program are available, as well as Birkbeck Libray and e-Library.

#11 MSc in Corporate Governance and Compliance, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

The mission of this master’s program is to ‘’provide specialized training and practical knowledge to prepare directors, company secretaries and compliance professionals for strengthening the sustainability and accountability of their organizations’’. This is achieved with an expert teaching team and an innovative curriculum.

This program has eight core courses and two elective courses. It is available in both part time and full-time modes to suit individual study preference. All of those who are interested in the corporate governance of commercial companies and NGOs and meet the necessary requirements are welcome to apply.