Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies BSc

Major at Leuphana College

Do you want to ac­qui­re skills which will enable you to ac­tive­ly cont­ri­bu­te to sustainable de­ve­lop­ment? Would you like to be able to do so on a glo­bal le­vel with an in­ter­na­tio­nal per­spec­tive? Then come stu­dy Glo­bal En­vi­ron­men­tal and Sustaina­bi­li­ty Stu­dies in an in­ter­na­tio­nal set­ting in the his­to­ric town of Lüne­burg. Due to its intercultural approach the programme is taught entirely in English. It pre­pa­res you for a ca­re­er in in­sti­tu­ti­ons and or­ga­ni­sa­ti­ons which ope­ra­te in­ter­na­tio­nal­ly. Be­co­me part of the Leu­pha­na Uni­ver­si­ty of Lüne­burg which is on the cut­ting-edge of in­ter- and trans­di­sci­pli­na­ry science and has been spe­cia­li­sing in sustainable de­ve­lop­ment in re­se­arch and teaching for over 30 ye­ars.

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Bachelor GESS: Studying with an international perspective and in an international environment

Sustaina­bi­li­ty ques­ti­ons are of­ten glo­bal and re­qui­re so­lu­ti­ons which must be dis­co­ve­r­ed and de­ve­l­o­ped trans­na­tio­nal­ly. It is this out­look that our in­ter­na­tio­nal­ly-ori­en­ted de­gree pro­gram­me Glo­bal En­vi­ron­men­tal and Sustaina­bi­li­ty Stu­dies is ba­sed on. All cour­ses in this ma­jor are taught in Eng­lish. You will be stu­dy­ing with stu­dents from many dif­fe­rent coun­tries and en­coun­ter pro­fes­sors with a wide va­rie­ty of cul­tu­ral back­grounds.

During the first semesters, you will attend the lectures together with students of our more nationally orientated major “Umweltwissenschaften (Environmental Science)” because both programmes are closely interlinked.

As a stu­dent of the ma­jor Glo­bal En­vi­ron­men­tal and Sustaina­bi­li­ty Stu­dies, you will ex­plo­re the cur­rent sustaina­bi­li­ty chal­len­ges from the point of view of dif­fe­rent di­sci­pli­nes, such as so­cio­lo­gy, eco­lo­gy and eco­no­my to achie­ve a ho­lis­tic un­der­stan­ding of the pro­blems at hand. You will de­ve­lop a firm know­ledge-base in the so­ci­al and na­tu­ral sci­en­ces and learn to ap­p­ly tools and me­thods from both fiel­ds. To do this, you will be working with mo­dels and sta­tis­tics, but also spen­ding time in the lab and out­doors or with part­ners from the dif­fe­rent fiel­ds in ques­ti­on.

Fur­ther­mo­re, you will de­ve­lop the skill­set nee­ded to iden­ti­fy, com­mu­ni­ca­te and ad­dress sustaina­bi­li­ty chal­len­ges, so that you can act as a chan­ge agent for sustainable de­ve­lop­ment.

Why study Sustainability Studies in Germany?

Despite being an industrial nation with a heavy reliance on technology and having been among the largest contributors to environmental problems, Germany is one of the pioneers in areas such as climate protection and Education for Sustainable Development.

Goals of the degree Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies

As a stu­dent of the Ba­che­lor pro­gram­me Glo­bal En­vi­ron­men­tal and Sustaina­bi­li­ty Stu­dies in Lüne­burg, you will ac­qui­re the know­ledge to sci­en­ti­fi­cal­ly ex­plain and as­sess glo­bal cli­ma­te and en­vi­ron­men­tal issues. Mo­re­o­ver, you will learn to un­der­stand the so­ci­al va­lues, gui­de­li­nes and be­ha­vioral pat­terns which ge­ne­ra­te the­se pro­blems, gain power of judgment and de­ve­lop new at an international level ap­proa­ches for a gent­ler pro­ces­sing of na­tu­ral re­sour­ces.

You will ac­qui­re skills which enable you to un­der­stand com­plex cor­re­la­ti­ons bet­ween dif­fe­rent pro­blems, think con­nec­ted­ly, ana­ly­se in­ter­linked pro­ces­ses and find sustainable so­lu­ti­ons. Ad­di­tio­nal­ly, by studying in an international environment you will gain in­ter­cul­tu­ral ex­pe­ri­ence as well as interpersonal and practical skills for transcultural team work and project management. This ma­kes you an in­va­luable gra­dua­te on the in­ter­na­tio­nal job mar­ket of sustainable eco­no­my and the sustainable de­ve­lop­ment of our so­cie­ty.

Studying Environmental Sciences in German

Furthermore, the College offers a more nationally oriented degree programme in the area environmental and sustainability sciences which is taught in German and English and for which you have to provide proficiency of German. Environmental Sciences major

Study Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies abroad

You have a variety of option to gain international study experience during your Bachelor Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies: you can apply for a program with an integrated exchange year. Thus, you study an additional year abroad in Sweden, Spain, Peru, Hungary, Peru or the Netherlands and change to an eight-semester Bachelor programme.

In addition, you can spend one semester abroad as part of an ERASMUS or non-European exchange programme or as a so-called free mover at a university of your choice.

Studying at College: Our study concept

In the Bachelor with Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies major, you combine specialist knowledge with solution-oriented thinking and responsible action. The Leuphana Semester and Complementary Studies provide the framework for dealing with socially relevant topics outside your chosen major/minor combination. They are an integral part of the Bachelor programme at Leuphana College and give you the freedom to immerse yourself in different fields of knowledge and to develop viable solutions for the challenges of the future together with other Bachelor students.

GESS major at Leuphana College: Study concept ©Leuphana
GESS major at Leuphana College: Study concept

You can find information on the structure of the Bachelor programme at Leuphana College and course content for the Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies major on the Curriculum page.

Possible minor combinations

Business Administration (GER)
Business Law (GER)
Business Psychology (GER)
Comparative Economic Law (ENG)
Digital Business (GER)
Digital Media / Information Technology & Culture (GER)
Economics (GER / ENG)
Educational Sciences (GER)
Engineering (Fundamentals) (GER)
Museum Studies (EN)
Philosophy (GER / ENG)
Political Science (GER / ENG)
Psychology and Society (ENG)
Social Media and Information Systems (GER)
Spatial Sciences (GER / ENG)

The Leuphana Bachelor enables the combination of different interests through major and minor. With the minor choice you can move within traditional disciplines or give your Bachelor an individual profile. You can also choose a minor that is not listed in the overview.

Language of instruction

ENG Eng­lish-lan­gua­ge sub­ject: no Ger­man re­qui­red
GER Ger­man-lan­gua­ge sub­ject: Ger­man re­qui­red
GER / ENG Ger­man-lan­gua­ge sub­ject can also be ta­ken in Eng­lish

At a glance: BSc Global Environmental and Sustainability Studies

  • Degree awarded: Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.)
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Extent: 180 ECTS
  • Study places: 70
  • Language: English (no German required)
  • Fees: no tuition fees
  • Semester contribution: approx. EUR 318,15
  • Semester abroad: possible
  • Start date: Beginning of October
  • Application period: from mid may to 15 July
  • Requirements: university entrance qualification and English skills
  • Restricted admission: yes
  • Admission: own procedere at Leuphana College

Living in Lüneburg

Lüneburg is a university town and home to 9.000 students who play a major role in public life. Should you occasionally crave the big city life, the busy metropolis of Hamburg is only a thirty-minute train ride away. Living in Lüneburg

Events for prospective students

Student counselling service

Clarify your questions in a personal conversation during the Open Advisory Service. You can take advantage of digital counselling at short notice without registering. The College study advisors will be happy to help you:

  • Wednesdays from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. (in person on campus)
  • Thursdays from 4-6 p.m. (digitally via Zoom)

Find out more

Applications and admissions

Leuphana College accepts new students each winter term. If you wish to be considered for a Bachelor degree programme, your application must be received by July 15.

For applicants from EU and EEA countries the University operates a special admissions procedure for the award of places. It considers not only applicants' grades, but also special skills, experience and non-academic achievements such as periods spent studying abroad, and volunteering work.

Online applications

Online applications are possible from mid-May. Find out more about the entry requirements and specific admissions process at Leuphana College. Find out more now

Exchange students

The International Center will be pleased to assist you in planning and organising your studies abroad at Leuphana College. Study abroad at Leuphana

Contact & Counseling

Initial Information

Information Office (Infoportal)
Buil­ding 8, ground floor
Universitätsallee 1, 21335 Lüneburg
Phone +49.4131.677-2277
Fax +49.4131.677-1430
Opening hours
Term time & term break:
Mon - Thu 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Fr 9 - 12 a.m.

Arrange an appointment

College's Student Counselling Service
Buil­ding 8, ground floor
Uni­ver­sitätsal­lee 1, 21335 Lüne­burg
Open Con­sul­ta­ti­on Hours
Wed  11 – 13 h (on campus)
Thu 16 – 18 h (via Zoom)

Programme Director

Prof. Dr. Henrik von Wehrden
Universitätsallee 1, C11.005b
21335 Lüneburg
Fon +49.4131.677-1694