Certificate Update
With the recent formation of the Business & Environment track within the Nicholas School, the Entrepreneurial Innovation and Entrepreneurship certificate is no longer being offered as a stand-alone certificate. We encourage students interested in environmental innovation and entrepreneurship to consider the Business & Environment concentration and/or to pursue our entrepreneurship courses in marketing (Marketing for Environmental Professionals – ENV782) and entrepreneurial experience (Entrepreneurial Experience – ENV767). Client-based entrepreneurial projects will continue to be available and students should seek out Professor Jesko von Windheim to pursue these programs.  Independent studies are also available to students who wish to pursue their own entrepreneurial ideas, and the Nicholas School also offers summer funding on a competitive basis to students or student teams who have a business case for pursuing an independent venture.

The Environmental Innovation & Entrepreneurship Certificate is a two-year program. Using both experiential and traditional teaching approaches, the goal of this program is to take students from answering a basic question about the environment: “What is happening in the environment and how does this impact the world going forward?”  to answering a core, entrepreneurial question: “How can this be translated into a sustainable, value-creating opportunity?”

Students will focus on identifying valuable, practical ideas, learn to directly interact with end-users or potential customers to get feedback, and ultimately act in order to implement these ideas.

Certificate Program Courses

Required forms and deadlines for the Certificate can be found here.

YearCourse TitleCourse NumberTimingCredits
1Resource & Environmental EconomicsEnviron520Fall (H1)1.5
1Environmental Mega TrendsEnviron762Fall (H1)1.5
1Marketing for Environmental ProfessionalsEnviron782Spring3
2Capstone: Entrepreneurial ExperienceEnviron767Fall3
2EI&E ElectiveEnvironXXXAny3
2Independent Study (optional)EnvironXXXAnyTBD

Core Courses:

Resource and Environmental Economics                    
This course provides a survey of environmental and natural resource economics. The course covers conceptual and methodological topics and applies these skills to current issues in environmental and resource policy. The course is roughly divided in thirds. The first third of the course focuses on basic theory and methods of economic analysis of environmental problems. What is the efficient level of environmental protection? How does cost-benefit analysis help determine efficient policies? How is cost-benefit analysis implemented? The second third of the course focuses on the economics of the environment, particularly the economics of pollution control. We will evaluate several different methods for pollution control from an economic perspective. The final third of the course focuses on natural resource management. What is the optimal rate of extraction of oil? What is the optimal fishery or forest management policy? What policy instruments can be used to attain these optimal management levels?

Environmental Mega Trends                       Syllabus (Fall 2017)
The Mega Trends course investigates major, over-arching trends in environmental science, policy, thought, practice, and trajectories for the coming 25 years. The course combines seminars given by thought leaders from around the US who will speak on emerging environmental topics with coursework that teaches an analytical framework to put these issues into context and facilitate action.

The purpose of Resource and Environmental Economics and Environmental Mega Trends is to help students develop an expanded worldview that will form the basis for developing a business case around an opportunity of interest later in the program.

Foundations in Environmental Entrepreneurship                           Syllabus (spring 2017)
This course is broken down into three segments: Marketing, Finance, and Entrepreneurial Practice. After learning the basics of marketing and finance, students will use their experience from Mega Trends to create a “final product” in Entrepreneurial Practice. This may include a business plan, a fully-researched business model, or some other output that can form the basis of a future entrepreneurial activity. Click here to meet the Foundations Mentors.

Capstone: Entrepreneurial Experience                                    Syllabus (fall 2016)
Entrepreneurial Experience teaches marketing, finance and business planning within the context of forming a start-up. Core concepts include: establishing a value proposition; identifying an opportunity; intellectual property and technology management; marketing & financing a start-up; and exiting a company. The course has a technology focus, but many of the concepts apply to any start-up activity. Students will form teams to go through all the steps required to form a business, stopping short of executing legal agreements to do so. The experience is an ideal springboard for students who want to start a company or be part of an early-stage company in the future. To learn more about how this course has benefited career development, read testimonials from past students.


While one elective is required for successful completion of the Environmental Innovation & Entrepreneurship certificate, there are several classes that complement the coursework. Examples include:

Social Entrepreneurship (MANAGEMT 750)
This course is about the efforts of private citizens to develop innovative solutions to social problems. Social entrepreneurs are increasingly blurring the lines between the sectors, using for-profit and hybrid forms of organization to achieve social objectives. This creates new opportunities for applying business skills in the social sector. The objectives of this course are to introduce students to the concepts, practices, and challenges of social entrepreneurship, to equip students with frameworks and tools that will help them be more effective in theses pursuits, and to engage students in a joint learning process as we explore this emerging field.

Business and the Environment (ENVIRON 811)     Syllabus (Fall 2017)
This is an introductory core course for students in Business & Environment. It introduces students to business organization and management practices. It also considers the ways in which businesses operate within an environmental, social and economic context to address global problems such as air pollution, degradation of water supplies, the unsustainable use of natural resources, energy poverty, climate change, deforestation and reduction in biodiversity. Each of these problems is complex in nature. To begin to craft business solutions to address them requires an understanding of the underlying drivers as well as economic and business implications. In this course, students will develop a holistic view of environmental stewardship so that they can be prepared to develop financially and technically sustainable solutions to these very challenging problems whether in a private sector, corporate, NGO, or public agency setting.

Entrepreneurial Execution, Planning, and Management (STRATEGY 845)             Syllabus (spring 2016)
As a complement to the Entrepreneurial Strategy (STRATEGY 838) course, Entrepreneurial Execution, Planning, and Management taught at the Fuqua School of Business focuses on the successful creation and early execution of a new venture. The course concentrates on new enterprises based on substantial innovations with potential for high growth and funding by venture capitalists. The course is based on readings, lectures and case discussion with the intent of allowing students to derive practical lessons from experience in actual ventures. Students in this course will have practical exposure to all the basic operational tools required to start up and operate a company.

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