Finance - Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance
This one year full-time, or two-year part-time course is aimed at graduates with a background in a number of different fields (including Business, Economics, Finance, Engineering, Mathematics, Environmental Science and Physics) who are keen to pursue a career in the growing number of industries in the sustainable business and finance industry.
It is estimated that achieving the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 will require investments of $5-7 trillion annually across both the public and private sector. The estimated $2.5 trillion investment gap every year in the developing world is a significant challenge but also an opportunity for policy makers, investors and businesses alike.
In this respect, the course will advance your understanding of finance theory and the application of sustainability factors (with a focus on environmental issues) to financial markets. The course also features a strong low carbon energy component and aims to equip students with creative and analytical approaches to problem-solving in the sustainable finance context as well as enhance the students' interpersonal and leadership skills.
The programme can be undertaken on a part-time basis, thus enabling current professionals with the relevant background to combine working life with study, however this is dependent on students' employment commitments. Note that this is not a dedicated part-time programme and that students will be required to attend lectures, tutorials and complete group assignments in conjunction with the full-time cohort, for whom the schedule is primarily during working hours for a block of hours on several days a week. Modules in autumn trimester will be delivered in a compressed format meaning that modules are taught intensively over two 6 week periods, requiring additional attendance at lectures and tutorials. Employer support is therefore essential.
What will I learn?
As well as a comprehensive knowledge of finance, you will acquire an in-depth understanding of the practical integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in financial decision making. You will also develop the professional and personal knowledge and skills necessary for a career in the sustainable finance and impact investing field.
Through this Masters you will gain:
1. A comprehensive understanding of the financial and business decision-making processes of both investors and companies and how these can be enhanced by taking into account environmental factors.
2. A critical understanding of the models, technologies and principles that are used to monitor and analyse environmental risk and opportunity across financial markets.
3. An enhanced knowledge of how finance professionals can contribute and innovate towards environmental sustainability.
4. A strong emphasis on the development of interpersonal skills, leadership and problem-solving, as well as tracking recent developments, ensuring that graduates are well-informed on the industry and well-equipped to enter it.
How will I benefit?
As the only Masters in the world which has an in depth coverage of environmental and impact finance and green data science, this course offers an unrivalled level of specialisation in global clean energy and sustainable finance markets with significant career opportunities. Graduates of this programme are in high demand, both internationally and within Ireland.
The invaluable knowledge of top-class academics combined with the participation of key figures from the areas of sustainable business and finance results in an especially rich and relevant curriculum. The breadth of the course content is reflected by the flexibility of the course (students can choose from three different pathways of completion) as well as the varied approach to assessment (examination, research papers, empirical projects, presentations, course work, internship/research project).
It provides a springboard for a career in a wide range of public and private sector organisations, from asset management firms, venture capital funds, renewable energy and green data companies through to national governments and banking institutions.
The MSc in Renewable Energy and Environmental Finance is aimed at those who would like to pursue a career in the growing number of sustainable finance sectors. The programme is suitable for students from a wide variety of disciplines such as business/finance/economics, environmental science, engineering, geography, mathematics or physics.
The educational values of the programme are to provide students with the knowledge and skills to: critically evaluate the financial and business management decisions of investors and firms in the context of the transition to a low carbon and sustainable economy; apply statistical analysis techniques to the valuation and management of portfolios of financial securities, including green portfolios; apply data science tools to the mining and analysis of environmental data; develop a deep understanding of policy implications in the area of environmental finance and sustainable energy and enhance the students teamwork and leadership skills to succeed as future leaders in the area of sustainable development.
The learning environment consists of both theoretical and applied components. Lectures combine theory and practice and are complemented with small group tutorials. Students engage in autonomous learning though individual assignments including literature reviews. Team work is also encouraged through presentations of data analysis and case studies. Students also have access to state of the art financial databases in a designated dataroom. An optional internship programme is also integrated into the programme (the nature of the learning environment for students).
The programme uses multiple teaching, learning and assessment approaches. Modules are presented mainly by academics and also feature many guest lectures and presentations delivered by practitioners with significant industry experience. Industry experts in the area of environmental and renewable energy finance also contribute to the design, delivery, and evolution of the curriculum. Assessment strategies include traditional exams, case study presentations and written reports. Group projects and presentations are also a key feature of this programme (key approaches to teaching, learning and assessment).
Programme Outcomes: Please see website.
The curriculum encompasses a substantial set of finance modules to ensure a deep financial background of every student, the major theoretical aspects of renewable energy and environmental finance, along with modules focusing upon the tools and techniques for evaluating a comprehensive range of global, regional and firm level environmental and financial issues.
To complete the programme, students must complete twelve core modules. Knowledge of mathematics foundations will be required for several core finance modules in the Autumn trimester. Mathematics foundations involving set theory, calculus, linear algebra, and probability and statistics will be tested. In the summer term students complete one core module and can complete either a research project, two option modules or apply for a number of possible internships. With any possible internship opportunity students have to go through a competitive recruitment process, including interviews with employers, to be selected.
Quantitative Methods for Finance
Capital Markets and Instruments
Environmental Finance & Impact Investing
Renewable Energy Finance
Energy Economics and Policy
Portfolio and Risk Management
Ethics in Financial Services:
Students choose one of the Pathways below:
Green Data Science
plus choose two modules from the list below:
Mergers and Acquisitions
Advanced Treasury Management
Green Data Science
Please be advised that the above is the curriculum for 20/21. Option modules listed are indicative of what has been delivered but may change from year to year.
Note that on-campus teaching is delivered under prevailing public health guidelines. In the event of a required change to planned delivery, further information about alternative delivery methods (including online delivery) will be confirmed with prospective and incoming students.
Please review the entry requirements below. The UCD Smurfit Admissions Office staff have expertise in reviewing international qualifications from around the world and will be able to assess your application's comparability to the Irish entry requirement.
An honours bachelors degree in:
a. Business/Commerce including quantitative subjects such as Economics, Finance or Accounting or
b. a Finance-related-area, Mathematical Finance, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Environmental Science, Science, Computer Science, Engineering or Physics
with a minimum 2.1 award at NFQ Level 8 (or international equivalent) in a. or b. above.
Applicants should have demonstrated strong academic ability (a 1.1 or 2.1) in a number of quantitative modules in their degree, such as Mathematics, Statistics, or Econometrics.
Candidates may be asked to sit the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT).
How to apply
Step 1: Collating Documentation
The first step is to collate the required documentation needed to assess your application. Please ensure that you have clearly scanned, titled and collated your documents in numerical order.
These can include but are not limited to:
English Language Test
Step 2: The Application Process
Once you have collated the required documentation and reviewed the entry requirements for your programme of interest, you can now apply online.
You must apply online using our dedicated student information portal. You will be required to enter contact details, upload your documents and answer two essay questions (each approximately 300 words). We would ask that you seriously consider both essays and answer these in the context of the programme you are applying to. Try to not replicate your CV and demonstrate what makes you different from other applicants. There are no right or wrong ways to complete these essays.
Applications are assessed on a rolling basis and courses will close once they are filled. We advise you to apply as early as possible to avoid disappointment. Please note certain scholarships may require you to apply before a certain date – please refer to our scholarship page here. If you have any questions in relation to deadlines or availability please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You will then be asked to submit your application and pay the €50 application fee. No application can be assessed until the fee has been paid. You can apply for multiple programmes with the one application fee, but please be sure to mark your preferred course.
Once submitted, it usually takes 2-3 weeks before a decision is made on fully completed applications. This time period can sometimes be longer and can vary at different times in the year and in different regions. We may offer you a conditional place based on the completion of a number of criteria, such as degree, English test, or another qualification. This reserves you a place on the course and once you have fulfilled this criteria we will issue you a full offer.
Acceptance is completed by paying a non-refundable deposit (varies from either €500 or €1000 depending on the programme. Most of our programmes require a €500 deposit). Your offer email will detail the exact deposit amount required. Once you have accepted you will then be supported by the Programme Office who will contact you with further course and start details.
12 months Full-Time, 24 months Part-Time.
Fees Full-Time EU:
€18,205 (academic year 2020/2021)
€19,900 (academic year 2020/2021)
Fees Part-Time EU:
€9,105 per year (academic year 2020/2021)
€9,950 per year (academic year 2020/2021)
Important Note: Tuition fees and other charges are subject to change each year.
Next Intake: September 2020
Post Course Info
The MSc in Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance from UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School is highly regarded within the energy and renewables industry. Our graduates go on to occupy positions in both the public and private sectors.
100% of our graduates from this programme were employed after 6 months across a range of industry sectors. (Source: Latest Graduate Outcomes Survey, published November 2021. Response rate 50%)
Potential careers for our graduates include:
Energy Project Manager
Energy Systems Analyst
Legal and Compliance Officer
Energy Policy Analyst
Energy Economics and Policy Researcher