Sustainable development: A case study approach

Master’s level
15 credits (ECTS)
Study pace
Study form
Application period
Application code
Full education cost: 23 000 SEK
First payment: 23 000 SEK

No fees are charged for EU and EEA citizens, Swedish residence permit holders and exchange students.

More information about tuition fees

Application opens 16 September 2024


Together with other students from your own and other scientific disciplines, you conduct a case study focusing on how society plans for sustainable development in a local context.

During the course, you together with your group members, map, analyze, model and evaluate problems, challenges and opportunities for sustainable development. A central part of this work is that you will interact with authorities, experts, locals, etc. The results you present at the end of the course in the form of a written report and an oral presentation.

The course gives you training in planning and implementing a project, identifying and using different methods to analyze sustainable development in theory and in practice, to interact with community actors, and to present important results from the case study.

You will take part in some introductory lectures and literature discussions at the beginning of the course, but primarily the course is conducted in the form of a practical joint project work, where you, together with your group mates, largely control what is to be done. The teacher responsible for the course presents the actual study area, but you students decide the daily work in the groups yourselves. This is done under the supervision of one or more teachers. During the project work, you report what is done by keeping a diary with reflections on your own process and learning.

Prerequisites and selection

Entry requirements

University studies of at least 180 credits, including at least 60 credits within environmental science, natural science, geography, cultural or natural geography, or other courses relevant to the topic, and an approved Bachelor thesis of at least 15 credits. Applicants must prove their knowledge of English: English 6/English B from Swedish Upper Secondary School or the equivalent level of an internationally recognized test, for example TOEFL, IELTS.


Selection is based upon the number of credits from previous university studies, maximum 165 credits.

After graduation


The introductory lectures and literature discussions are conducted in the Natrium building, on Medicinareberget in Gothenburg (Medicinaregatan 7B).

The projects require field work in the surveyed area, which may be located in the Gothenburg region or in Western Sweden. Some of the time can be allocated to one of the university's field stations, depending on the geographical orientation of the case study.