Sustainable development and Environmental Economics

As an environmental economist you will be involved in the study of socio-economic development activities that affect the environment and how sustainable policies can be created to provide environmental solutions.

What do Environmental Economists do ?

Environmental economists study the economics involved in the extraction and use of natural resources and the disposal of waste products back to the environment. They apply advanced economic techniques to provide practical advice to businesses, regulators and policymakers on effective policy and management of environmental issues related to areas like climate change adaptation and mitigation, water resources management, agriculture and biosecurity.

What does a typical day at work involve?

  • Checked Working in the office on creating various economic models
  • Checked Preparing reports on the basis of research and data analysis
  • Checked Providing advice to policy planners and decision makers
  • Checked Engaging in conversations with the clients , stakeholders and different government departments through phone and meetings
  • Checked Involving in field work visiting sites and carrying out surveys
  • Checked Presenting information to clients, contractors and the general public
  • Checked Attending meetings and conferences

Job roles

Environmental consultants advise policy makers and other parties on a broad range of environmental and resource problems and provide guidance to businesses on how they can adapt their economic strategies to address environmental concerns.
Agricultural economists deal with the huge role that multinational agribusinesses have in the industry. They are involved in research and the development of policies regarding agriculture and planning of how a country will grow or import enough food to support its population
Resource economists study interactions between economic and natural systems and work closely with government agencies and policy makers to develop more sustainable methods of managing those resources to ensure their availability to future generations.

How to become an Environmental Economist?

Step 1
Take any Stream at +2 level

You may take any stream at +2 to be eligible for admission to an undergraduate course in Economics. However Mathematics at +2 is compulsory for eligibility to Bachelor’s course in Economics in some institutions. Also, preference may be given to candidates who have studied Economics at +2 level.

Step 2
Take an BA/BSc in Economics

Specialisations in Economics are not generally available at UG level in India. You may take up BA/ BSc or BA/ BSc (Hons) courses in Economics which are of three years duration.

Step 3
Take MA/ MSc in Economics with specialisation in Environmental Economics

You can take MA Economics which is a two year course which has Environmental Economics and Agricultural Economics as elective subjects. MSc Sustainable Development and Environmental Economics programme is available in foreign universities.

Step 4
Take PhD in Sustainable Development and Environmental Economics

Since careers in this field are research oriented it is advisable to take up Doctoral qualifications in related topics. Many prestigious institutions in India offer facilities for research in these specialisations of Economics.

Sustainable development and Environmental Economics Colleges

Name State District Type Website Course

Requirements for masters in Sustainable Development and Environmental Economics

Requirements for admission into a PG course in one of the top institutions to help you get an overall picture

India (for admission to Master of Arts (Ecology, Environment and Sustainable Development at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Guwahati, Assam)

  • A Bachelor's or Master's Degree of minimum of 3 or 4 years duration or its equivalent.
  • National Entrance test (TISS-NET)
  • Pre-Interview Test (PIT) or Group discussion.
  • Personal Interview.

Foreign (For admission into MSc Environmental Economics and Climate Change at the London School of Economics , United Kingdom)

  • 2:1 degree or its equivalent in any discipline(preferably in Economics, Social Science, Humanities or Natural Sciences).
  • English Language Proficiency : an overall score of 7.0 in IELTS or 100 in TOEFL.
  • Academic statement of purpose describing your intent to join the programme.
  • Two academic references.

To see the entrance exams, scholarships and UG admission details, click here

Skills Required

Reading Comprehension

As environmental economists would be working with lengthy documents, it is important for them comprehend written matter fast and effectively.

Writing skills

Environmental economists have to make extensive study reports and presentations according to the understanding of the audience they are addressing.

Critical Thinking

Its Vital for them to use logic and reason to understand the pros and cons of approaches, solutions and conclusions.

Decision Making

Environmental Economists need to consider the potential and quality of the policies they are undertaking in order to ensure efficient fulfillment of the goals keeping in mind the safety of the environment.


  • Checked Environmental Consultancy Firms
  • Checked Government Departments
  • Checked International Organisations
  • Checked NGOs

Top Companies

  • Checked Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals (ANREP)
  • Checked CH2M Hill
  • Checked Tetra Tech
  • Checked Arcadis