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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership


The Postgraduate Certificate in Sustainable Business: Value Chains stream is a nine month, part-time Master's-level academic programme for individuals and groups seeking to embed sustainability into supply/value chains.

Read about value chain definitions and characteristics and our research, courses and company engagements in the circular economy.

Trado: New technologies to fund fairer, more transparent supply chains

19 August 2019

17 September 2019 – There is a growing understanding of the transformative potential of harnessing digital innovation and financial technologies to improve the sustainability of global supply chains. This report details the learnings and methodology of the collaborative project Trado, convened by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

Multi-sector collaboration between blue chips, start-ups and banks delivers new model to improve the sustainability of global supply chains without increasing production costs

19 August 2019

17 September 2019 – A successful experiment by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), bringing together Sainsbury's, BNP Paribas, Unilever, Barclays, Standard Chartered and Rabobank, has shown how a new model of blockchain and other data sharing technologies can enhance the sustainability of global supply chains without increasing production costs.

REALCAR project circular economy case study: Collaboration for a closed-loop value chain

25 January 2016

January 2016 – This closed-loop case study explores the lessons learnt from the REALCAR closed loop value chain project between Jaguar Land Rover, Novelis, Innovate UK and partners, in the creation of new materials and production systems to introduce closed-loop aluminium into Jaguar Land Rover cars.

Sustainable Consumption and Production: A Business Primer

23 October 2014

January 2007 – Business innovation and enterprise provide the fuel for economic growth, employment and social progress. Through increased choice, and the availability of affordable products and services, business plays an essential role in helping people improve their lives.

Carbon Management: A Practical Guide for Suppliers

23 October 2014

2009 – Carbon management: a practical guide for suppliers is a step-by-step carbon management guide for companies who supply retailers and other major corporations. It helps them respond to increasing requests from their customers for information about carbon management. It also shows how effective carbon management can cut costs and bring other business benefits.

Product Stewardship Overload!

23 October 2014

May 2010 – While organic food labelling started in the 1960s, it was the timber debate that first triggered the idea of product stewardship. In the late 1980s, growing recognition of the loss of tropical rainforests led to the creation of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), which delivered the closest solution: to provide an economic incentive for the sustainable harvesting of forests.

Resilient Value Chains Report

23 October 2014

June 2011 – It is increasingly accepted that significant changes are needed in the level of practical actions and policy that can deal with longterm risks to business, customers and wider society from the degradation of our natural resource base. This major new business-led programme brings together a cross-sectoral group of leading companies to explore how to bring about such significant changes.

Down to Zero Procurement Compact Prospectus

23 October 2014

May 2012 – The UK Government and The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group on Climate Change (UK CLG) both stand committed to reducing carbon emissions and supporting a rapid transition to a low-carbon economy. The Climate Change Act (2008) - a world-leading piece of legislation - has created a binding, legal pathway of emissions reductions, driving the decarbonisation of large parts of the UK economy. To follow this pathway and deliver on these goals there needs to be a dramatic increase in the supply of affordable low-carbon goods and services.

Natural Capital Business Case Study: The Kericho Tea Plantation

23 October 2014

June 2012 – Tea has been grown in the highly productive Kericho district of Kenya for many decades. For much of that time plantation managers were focused primarily on agronomic improvements and crop productivity. However, in the late 1990s increasingly unpredictable rainfall led to reduced resource security. Crop productivity fell and the hydroelectric power that ran the factory machinery became increasingly unreliable.

Natural Convergence: Integrating Business and Government Strategies to Manage Natural Capital

23 October 2014

September 2012 – Given the challenging economic backdrop for businesses, one might be forgiven for being uncertain about where sustainable land use fits in. What is clear already, however, is that there are pressures and concerns, readily identified in this report, which we are going to have to tackle in order to have any kind of long-term economic future. Businesses are increasingly realising that in order to operate sustainably they must protect and enhance all the environmental resources and services that are used or affected by their operations.



Programme overview


Meet the Directors

Join a webinar session hosted by the Directors of our part-time graduate courses as they give you an overview of our programmes and admissions process for 2023 applications and can answer your questions.


Quick links

All graduate courses

Who should apply?

Delivery format


Organisational stream curriculum

Value Chain stream curriculum

What is a Value Chain?

Value Chain-related publications

Employer benefits

Admission requirements

Sources of funding 

Student impact stories

Register for the Meet the Directors webinar

FAQs on our sustainable business courses


emma fromberg

Emma Fromberg Programme Manager


Want to learn more?

Accredited by University of Cambridge, the part-time Postgraduate Certificate in Sustainable Value Chains helps professionals create resilient supply chains.

Submit your application by the end of March.