Develop Change Agents Through Sustainability Education

About The Strategy

SMU aims to prepare students as future sustainability leaders and active global citizens through transformative education and holistic learning experience. We will ensure that every undergraduate (UG) student has a foundational understanding of sustainability, as encapsulated in the UNSDGs, through implementing a sustainability course requirement. We will be the first University in Singapore, and possibly Asia, to put the spotlight on sustainability in UG curriculum and co-curriculum, and this integration across the two areas is designed to result in a transformational impact on knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours.

Related United Nations Sustainability Development Goals (UNSDGs)
UNSDG 1 - No Poverty
UNSDG 3 - Good Health and Well-Being
UNSDG 4 - Quality Education
UNSDG 5 - Gender Equality
UNSDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
UNSDG 10 - Required Inequalities
UNSDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
UNSDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
UNSDG 13 - Climate Action
Our Achievements
Undergraduate and Postgraduate Education The Sustainability major by the Lee Kong Chian School of Business (LKSCB), launched in 2020, answers the call for young graduates to be well versed in sustainability issues and to be equipped to make meaningful impact. This second major, the first of its kind in Singapore, was designed to train students to be well versed in sustainability issues and equip them to make meaningful impact on sustainability matters. LKCSB also offers a Sustainability Track as part of its Master of Science in Management programme. LKCSB administers sponsored sustainability fellowships, scholarships, study missions, and social enterprise development through the DBS-SMU Sustainability Initiative. The School of Social Sciences (SOSS) Politics, Law and Economics major launched a new Sustainable Futures track from AY2022/23. The track provides an in-depth understanding of sustainability issues from a multi-disciplinary perspective. The SMU Global Summer Programme (GSP) introduced a new Sustainable Futures track starting from the 2023 programme edition. This new track provides students with the opportunity to gain relevant industry insights into the multifaceted field of Sustainability, empowering them with more options for their future careers.


Companies increasingly seek to be more sustainable, but many firms struggle to operationalise it within their supply chain or to translate the theoretical concepts into practical value for customers.

More SMU-X Courses on Sustainability

Examples of Sustainability Courses and Programmes
College of Integrative Studies (CIS)
  • Heated Debates: Climate Justice
  • Climate History & Society
  • Climate Change: Global and Local Solutions
  • Technological Innovations Enhancing Urban Sustainability
School of Accountancy (SOA)
  • Sustainability Accounting and Reporting
Lee Kong Chian School of Business (LKCSB)
  • Sustainability Management & Governance
  • Sustainable Entrepreneurship/Practicum
  • Organisational Aspects of Sustainable Innovation
  • Sustainable Operations
  • Sustainable Finance
School of Economics (SOE)
  • Environmental Economics
School of Computing and Information Systems (SCIS)
  • Sustainable Digital Cities
  • Smart City Operations Research
Yong Pung How School of Law (YPHSL)
  • Sustainability Law and Policy
  • Climate Change Law and Policy
School of Social Sciences (SOSS)
  • Development, Underdevelopment and Poverty
  • Social Stratification & Inequality
  • Environmental Politics & Policy
  • Sociology of Education
SMU Global Summer Programme (GSP)
  • Climate, History, Society
  • Digital Technologies for Environmental Sustainability
  • Innovations for Asia’s Smart Cities
  • Psychology of Sustainability
  • Sustainability Accounting and Reporting
  • Sustainability, Multinational Corporations, and International Economic Law

Scholarships and Grants
DBS Sustainability Scholarship

Established in 2019, the DBS Sustainability Scholarship is available to full-time undergraduates at the Singapore Management University.  It seeks to attract the best undergraduate students with a view to creating impact for sustainability in Singapore.

DBS Sustainability Business Study Mission Grant

The DBS Sustainability Business Study Mission Grant, funded by the Initiative, aims to provide financial support to financially-challenged students participating in the study mission.

Equinix Sustainability Scholarship

Established in 2021, the Equinix Sustainability Scholarship is available to full-time undergraduates at the Singapore Management University.  It is aimed at motivating outstanding undergraduates who want to expand their learning across traditional academic disciplines by taking on a major in Sustainability, offered by the Lee Kong Chian School of Business (LKCSB).

For the full list of sustainability-related financial aid, please visit SMU Admissions website.

Our Goals

Moving forward, SMU’s new sustainability education framework for curriculum and co-curriculum will guide future initiatives, so that all SMU students will be equipped with baseline sustainability mastery, with additional opportunities to access a fuller range of courses that offer different levels of mastery of sustainability literacy, according to their personal and professional interests. At the same time, we have also updated the Graduate Learning Outcomes (GLOs) for SMU students, emphasising that the understanding of sustainability issues is instrumental to becoming engaged global citizens.

Embed Sustainability Education Across the Curriculum

SMU’s sustainability education framework offers opportunities for foundational, intermediate, and advanced mastery of sustainability issues. 

Sustainability Education Framework

Level of Mastery
Learning Outcomes
Foundational Mastery
Understand what sustainability is and what the UNSDGs are
Understand the need to respond to the sustainability challenges by changing ways of doing things
Reflect on their roles as agents of change in sustainable development
Intermediate Mastery

Depth: Have a deep understanding of a particular sustainability issue (as identified in the UNSDGs)


Application: Be able to identify issues with sustainability implications within a discipline and make decisions/ recommendations in favour of sustainability


Be able to plan, implement, evaluate, and replicate decisions/ recommendations in favour of sustainability in relation to a particular sustainability issue (as identified in the UNSDGs)

Advanced Mastery

Have a multi-disciplinary perspective of sustainability and be able to:


Propose solution to sustainability problems by applying concepts and tools from different disciplines


Drive and promote solutions to a particular sustainability issue (as identified in the UNSDGs)

At SMU, we are privileged to have a beautiful, green city centre campus; talented faculty with research expertise in tackling critical sustainability challenges; and students who are driven by a passion for creating a sustainable future for humanity and the planet.

Timothy Clark
Provost, SMU

The following initiatives will be implemented:

  • Enable all students (Undergraduate and Postgraduate) to acquire sustainability knowledge at the foundational level, where they will understand what sustainability and the SDGs are.
  • Develop foundational sustainability education digital resources for all freshmen access.
  • Increase the number of PG Professional Development (PGPD) workshops to enhance awareness of sustainability issues.
  • Encourage all SMU students to develop a deeper understanding of specific sustainability issues as identified in the SDGs.
  • Nurture students to be able to identify issues with sustainability implications within a discipline and make decisions or recommendations in favour of sustainability.
  • Put in place a sustainability graduation requirement for incoming cohorts of UG students from 2024 onwards.
  • Continue to grow sustainability-focused courses in the core options and majors.
  • Increase opportunities to address sustainability related issues in SMU’s experiential learning (SMU-X) courses and overseas study missions.
  • Develop several shared sustainability-focused courses for all PG Professional (PGPP) students regardless of their disciplines.
  • Grow the capacity of our existing Sustainability second major for more UG students.
  • Introduce a new PhD in Asian Urbanisms.
  • Develop new UG and PG sustainability-focused programmes.

  • Integrate Sustainability into SMU Co-Curriculum

    SMU’s sustainability education framework extends beyond curriculum and recognises that effective learning also occurs through co-curriculum activities.  Several initiatives will be rolled out to integrate foundational, intermediate, and advanced levels of mastery in sustainability into our co-curriculum.

    Level of Mastery and Learning Outcomes

    Foundation Mastery
    All SMU Community Service activities are socially conscious and sustainable in nature and involve planning, implementing, evaluating, and replicating decisions in favour of sustainability.
    Intermediate Mastery
    SMU will continue to enhance awareness of sustainability within internship opportunities for both undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.
    Advanced Mastery
    SMU will curate the following programmes for student participation and leadership development in the sustainability domain.
    • A signature sustainability leadership development programme, the SMU Pathfinder Overseas Sustainability Changemakers.
    • A sustainability-focused forum that showcases sustainability efforts and projects by the SMU community.
    • The Student Sustainability Awards to recognise outstanding individual and/or group contributions towards the UNSDGs.
    • A sustainability-themed undergraduate and graduate residential college.

    A few sustainability-focused projects include:

    ‘Project Sparks in the Hearth’ has been collaborating with the Catholic Welfare Services since Oct 2021 to reach out to rough sleepers on SMU campus and the neighbouring Jalan Besar vicinity. This project aims to combat prejudices and correct misconceptions about rough sleepers and the homeless.

    ‘Project Midori’ will be partnering the SMU Office of Campus Infrastructure and Services this year to support university-wide waste management initiatives. The team will help to raise awareness of SMU’s and its tenants’ green efforts, and encourage the SMU community to cut down food waste on campus. Our donor CDL has approved $42,500 from the CDL Young SDG Leaders Fund @ SMU to be utilised for the project’s efforts in 2022.

    ‘Project Stop Single-Use Disposables (SSUD)’ aims to increase the level of environmental sustainability awareness of the SMU community through a series of activities such as social media challenges on 5Rs & BYOs, eco trade-in programme, webinars, and workshops to encourage the adoption of new habits against single-used items. The team has organised six signature workshops and talks between 2021 and 2022, with invited speakers from Green Nudge, The Plastic Project, Package Pals, ZerowasteSG, and a sustainability case competition in partnership with Alumna Joline Tang, founder of the Sustainability Project.

    ‘Project Ket Noi VI’ partnered with Coins for Change Vietnam, an NGO that aids disenfranchised single mothers and children throughout Vietnam from Dec 2021 to Jan 2022. In Dec 2022, the project will continue its second engagement with the NGO to support its efforts to empower the single mothers to continue learning and growing their business skills so as to reinforce their self-sufficiency.


    SMU students get to visit regional centres of excellence in sustainability, engage in experiential learning opportunities, and develop skills like critical thinking and practical application in the DBS Sustainability Business Study Mission.

    DBS and SMU Join Hands To Launch Sustainability Programme

    Play Your Part in Sustainability


    Major in Sustainability

    This major offered by the Lee Kong Chian School of Business, the first of its kind in Singapore, develops a basic understanding of issues such as climate change, marine pollution, the depletion of natural resources, and poverty. 

    Make a gift

    Pay it forward. With your gift, many of our students will be able to achieve their educational and career goals. Your gift to SMU will empower students, expand capacity, and enhance impact.
    Our Measurement of Progress
    Develop a proposal for ‘Sustainability graduation requirement’ for UG students (aligned to Sustainability Education @ SMU framework). Develop compulsory foundational sustainability education digital resources for all freshmen (aligned to Sustainability Education @ SMU framework); all UG students to achieve foundational level of mastery.  Grow the enrolment of the existing 2nd major in Sustainability by LKCSB. Develop a proposal for a new SOSS UG major in Sustainable Communities/Societies. Infuse Sustainability concepts and C4SR Sustainability Framework into all Community Service Units. Launch the SMU Pathfinders Overseas Sustainability Changemakers Programme for student leadership development in sustainability. Organise, with student sustainability leaders, a signature Sustainability-focused forum that showcases sustainability efforts and projects by the SMU community.

    Last updated: 6 September 2022