‘World’s first’ circular economy MBA

Bradford University has announced that from July, it will offer the ‘world’s first’ circular economy Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) degree.

The ’Innovation, Enterprise and Circular Economy MBA’, run in conjunction with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and businesses including B&Q, BT, Cisco, Renault and National Grid, is offered through the Distance Learning Platform of the university’s business school.

The university states that the course will combine ‘classic areas of strategy, finance, and marketing within a circular economy framework’.

Speaking of the course, Professor Peter Hopkinson, Director for the distance learning Innovation, Enterprise and Circular Economy MBA, stated: “Today’s economic conditions, characterised by increased price volatility and scarcity on the energy and resources fronts, require a change in perspective. We believe that an innovative approach, which integrates systems thinking and looks beyond the linear ‘take, make, dispose’ model, is the answer that a forward-looking School of Management should strive to provide.

“We have designed our circular economy MBA to give the next generation of leaders a first-mover advantage, by tackling subjects such as regenerative product design, new business models, reverse logistics or enabling communication technologies, to name but a few elements.”

Course details

The part-time distance learning course will cost £13,500 and last between two and six years, depending on each student’s work and home commitments.

The course will start for the first group of students in July 2013, with the second group of students beginning in January 2014.

Modules include ‘Business Models for the Circular Economy’ and ‘Materials, Resources, Energy and Competitiveness’, as well as more traditional subjects such as ‘Business Accounting’ and ‘Project Management’.

Professor Hopkinson commented: “We strongly believe that our expertise in distance learning and our partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s independent experts panel and founding partners give our circular economy MBA the strongest basis possible, in terms of thought leadership and industry input.”

‘Towards the Circular Economy’ reports

Ellen MacArthur also commented on the new course, stating: “In order to address the challenges of a changing world, we need a pragmatic model which offers tangible economic perspectives, whilst appealing to aspiring entrepreneurs’ and future business leaders’ creativity and enthusiasm.

“The circular economy does just that, and working with Bradford University School of Management on this innovative MBA is the logical follow-up to our first joint initiative, the successful circular economy Post-Graduate Certificate.”

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation has produced two reports – ‘Towards the Circular Economy’, in two volumes – outlining the case for adopting a circular economy.

For example, the second volume estimates that implementing a circular economy could be worth $700 billion (£464 billion) in material savings to the consumer goods sector, in addition to benefits of land productivity and job creation.

Ellen MacArthur said: “The evolution of our economy from an increasingly resource-constrained ‘take,make,dispose’ model towards one that is circular and regenerative by intention poses a huge opportunity for business innovation.”

Read more about the Innovation, Enterprise and the Circular Economy MBA.