One-day Sustainability in Practice for Business course at UCC

This one-day Sustainability in Practice for Business course at UCC will enable businesses and participants to kick-start their organisational and own sustainability journey. 

Participants will learn what sustainability means for their organisation, and how to respond in a way that creates value and impact for the business, environment, and society. The course will examine the key drivers, risks, and opportunities for the business transition to sustainability. It will also explore how to develop a strategic business case for sustainability, develop sustainability KPIs/metrics to measure performance and understand the elements of a sustainability action plan. 

Throughout the course, participants will reflect on how they can act as agents of change for sustainability within their organisation.

Register here.

Sustainability in Practice for Business Flyer - 12 March 2024 at ERI, UCC

Course Objectives

  1. Understanding and responding to the sustainability challenge,
  2. What it means to be a sustainable business,
  3. Sustainability – key drivers, risks and opportunities,
  4. Making the strategic case for sustainability,
  5. Developing sustainability KPIs and an action plan,
  6. Leading on sustainability within your organisation.

Learning Outcomes

On completing this one-day programme, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the context of the sustainability challenge and need for transformation of business approaches and models to adequately counter these challenges, 
  • Recognise what sustainability means for their business now and envision how the company should respond, 
  • Understand key business sustainability concepts and frameworks in relation to your company and the work that you do, 
  • Be aware of relevant sustainability reporting standards, certifications and ESG ratings and how they apply to your organisation, 
  • Explore the key sustainability risks for your company and identify potential business opportunities and know how to develop a strategic business case for sustainability, 
  • Understand what short, medium and long term sustainability actions might have most impact for the organisation. 

Why this Course?

  • Facilitated peer to peer discussions around course content
  • Apply course content to your organisation
  • Network with like minded professionals 
  • Guest speaker – Dr Paul Deane, an expert in Renewables, Electricity, Energy Modelling, Climate and Energy Policy


Lead Trainer: 

Dr Paul Bolger is manager of the Environmental Research Institute at University College Cork, Ireland which brings together over 500 researchers to work on sustainability research using interdisciplinary approaches. With a PhD in Environmental Chemistry and an MBA in Business, Paul has worked across academia, industry and government for over 25 years developing long term research solutions for global sustainability challenges. Paul teaches on Leadership for Sustainability on the HDip for Sustainability in Enterprise at UCC. He is a PI on the UCC Sustainable Futures programme which is focused on education and training for climate action, environmental sustainability, and achieving net zero in industry and enterprise. Paul has delivered a wide range of education and training workshops to industry on sustainability.

Guest Speakers:

Dr. Maria Kirrane – Head of Sustainability and Climate Action, UCC. As the Head of Sustainability and Climate Action for UCC, Maria is tasked with delivering the University’s Sustainability and Climate Action Plan (2023-28) which seeks to embed the SDGs across all functions of the University. She led the University in becoming the first in the world to be awarded a Green Flag from the Foundation for Environmental Education, and the first outside of North America to be awarded a STARS Gold rating from the Foundation for Environmental Education. Maria established and manages UCC’s Green Campus Living Laboratory Programme which supports staff and students to develop and deliver their own sustainability projects.

Dr. Paul Deane – Paul is a Senior Lecturer in Clean Energy Futures at UCC and a skilled communicator who was awarded the Royal Irish Academy Science Speaker 2018. Paul is one of the top ten most cited academics globally in energy modelling and has been involved in the energy industry for over 15 years. He focuses on how we will heat our homes, fuel our cars, use our land and generate electricity. His research and teaching seeks to understand the transition to low carbon energy systems from a technical, societal and an economic perspective. Paul frequently provides media commentary on energy and climate action and his work has been featured on RTE, the BBC and Irish Times

Course Facilitator: Tanya Fitzgerald has significant experience working in the area of education and training for Sustainability. In her role as Enterprise Liaison Officer with the Sustainable Futures Project, UCC, Tanya works closely with enterprise partners to understand the skills and competencies required by industry in the transition to a more sustainable society. In addition to this, she has also worked on the design, development and delivery of a number of industry focused Sustainability Training programmes in addition to programmes focused on Sustainability from a community perspective. Tanya regularly facilitates working group sessions, focus groups and in-depth interviews with industry stakeholders and learners in an effort to design and deliver courses that directly address industry needs.

Register here.