Postgraduate study

Carbon Management MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Carbon Management

One of my favourite, although rather challenging, exercises involved creating a ‘low-carbon’ investment opportunity. Such skills I now use day to day as a business analyst for a renewable energy developer. Without a doubt the interdisciplinary nature of the Carbon Management course opened the door to my current occupation.

Kevin Meier MSc Carbon Management

Are you ready to confront the challenges of global climate change?

The MSc in Carbon Management is an interdisciplinary programme which focuses on the response to the challenge of climate change and decarbonising the economy. Drawing upon business studies, climate science, economics and the social sciences, it is delivered by the School of GeoSciences and the Business School at the University of Edinburgh.

Carbon management is at the heart of tackling climate change and has rapidly become a central part of the global business environment. This Msc is intended for graduates who want an advanced academic qualification to launch careers in carbon and climate change management in business or government.

The programme creates a culture of positivity in how we think about, and act towards, the climate change challenge. It is designed to equip you with high-level knowledge and understanding of climate change economics, carbon policy, managing decarbonisation and adaptation, business and corporate strategy as well as the science of climate change. You will also develop the skills and know-how in using analytical methods in carbon economics and policy making.

You can devise your study based on your own personal interests and career goals through option courses and your selection of an individual research dissertation.

The city of Edinburgh has emerged as one of most important global centres in carbon management. Known as the ‘Carbon Glen’, Edinburgh is a dynamic hub for both business and research institutes encompassing renewable energy, energy informatics and smart grids, agriculture, forestry and land-use, carbon capture and storage and behavioural change.

The MSc programme is housed within the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation (ECCI) an award-winning contemporary study space that brings together experts in law, business, technology and policy making.

This programme is ideal for those who are passionate about climate change and want a career in which they become part of the solution to one of the world’s most complex and greatest challenges.

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student blog, where our students share their experiences of postgraduate study, living in Edinburgh and everything in-between.

This MSc programme is comprised of:

  • 4 compulsory courses
  • 2 optional courses
  • Dissertation

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

You will experience a range of teaching styles while you are studying, depending on the subject matter and courses you are taking. Courses can be delivered through a mix of lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops, practicals, laboratory work, short field trips and longer field courses. Please view each relevant course for teaching and assessment methods.

Part-time study

As we are committed to helping people into education whilst continuing to work or managing family and personal commitments, you may study this programme part-time.

Online Carbon Management

If you are unable to commit to a full MSc at present, it is possible to study a postgraduate certificate by online learning:

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScCarbon Management1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2019/20
MScCarbon Management2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2019/20
MScCarbon Management3 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2019/20

A key strength of our programme is the employability of our graduates.

Our graduates have been very successful in securing employment in the carbon and climate change sector around the world. Types of roles include:

  • renewable energy project developers
  • commercial carbon management consultants to companies large and small
  • central, regional and local government civil servants delivering a wide range of climate and decarbonisation policies
  • climate policy advisors to parliaments,
  • NGO climate policy researchers and executives
  • PhD research and subsequent academic career path

Examples of the organisations our graduates have gained employment within include Deutsche Bank, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Carbon Sense, Carbon Capture and Storage Association, Mott MacDonald, Costain, Arup, Wood Group, Forestry Department Malawi, The Carbon Trust, Deloitte, 2020 Climate Group, Japanese Ministry of Education, China Beijing Environmental Exchange, WindPower Nepal, Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (UK), SEPA, Zero Waste Scotland and the Scottish Parliament.

The MSc in Carbon Management has excellent relationships with relevant employers, as well as an exclusive alumni network on LinkedIn with around 300 members covering more than 25 nations. This network provides you with unique opportunities to seek out advice from alumni, some of whom have over 10 years’ experience in the job market.

To create strong links between our graduates and prospective employers we:

  • Run a Topical Research Practitioner Mixer.
  • Invite stakeholders to participate in teaching on our field trips.
  • Biannual Carbon Management Alumni Conference.
  • Invite visiting speakers from business, government and NGOs throughout the year.

Field trips

Field trips are an excellent way in which to explore the factors and forces that shape our world and enable you to put valuable skills into practice.

The programme runs a two-day residential field course in which we may visit a large hydropower pumped storage facility, a flood plain management scheme, an urban climate change adaptation project, a wind farm and a low-carbon farm. Several courses run half-day field trips.

*Please note: Field course locations may change for a variety of reasons. Any changes to the main destination of the field course will be announced as soon as possible. There are no additional charges for excursions.

Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation

This programme is housed at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation (ECCI) - a work and learning space designed as a forum through which university academics and other professionals can work with businesses and local government to help develop a low-carbon society. Not only is the building exceptionally well-equipped and sustainable, you will be working and networking alongside professionals and employers within this high-demand field.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in economics, management, social sciences, humanities, physical sciences, geology, geography, environmental sciences, astronomy, biology, health sciences, chemistry, earth sciences, physics, engineering, business administration, or accounting and finance.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections; the "Enabling Skills" sections are not considered)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

Tuition fee deposit

If you receive an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, you will be asked to pay a tuition fee deposit of £1,500 to secure your place on the programme.

Find out more about tuition fee deposits:

Field trips and field courses

We do not charge extra fees for compulsory field trips or field courses. Costs of travel, accommodation and subsistence on compulsory field trips will be covered by the programme fees. However incidental/ personal expenses are to be met by the student.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScCarbon Management1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MScCarbon Management2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees
MScCarbon Management3 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

School of GeoSciences Scholarships

Browse funding opportunities

You are also encouraged to undertake your own research into the range of potential scholarships and other funding for which you may be eligible.

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • School of GeoSciences
  • Institute of Geography
  • Drummond Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9XP

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible.

You must submit one reference with your application.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of GeoSciences
  • Institute of Geography
  • Drummond Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9XP