The 10 Most In-Demand Skills In 2024: Sustainability Skills

By Steven Galvin - Last update

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Forbes recently asked the question, “if you’re a jobseeker or an employer looking to ensure success in 2024, what are the skills you should be developing?” In this series of articles, we’re taking a deep dive into the 10 most in-demand skills in 2024 and suggest courses you can take to develop these skills to set yourself up and future proof your career!

Below we take a look at why sustainability skills will be among the top demanded skill in 2024.

As the consequences of climate change intensify and world leaders sound the alarm for urgent action, skills that can drive environmental and social sustainability are set to be some of the most sought-after capabilities of 2024. From C-suite executives across every industry vertical to entry level analysts and supply chain technicians, demand will skyrocket for sustainability expertise to guide business transformation and build more regenerative models of commerce.

The World Economic Forum predicts sustainability roles rising rapidly, expecting 40-50 million new jobs created in energy transition, ecosystem restoration and circular economy adoption. Skills like lifecycle analysis, carbon accounting, ethical sourcing, circular design, cleantech deployment, ESG reporting, and sustainable operations will need to permeate nearly all functions as organizations align processes with aggressive net zero targets.

In fact, recruiters have already denoted sustainability literacy as the number one emerging aptitude they seek in 2022 across sectors like manufacturing, retail, transportation and IT. Candidates that can model their expertise towards sustainability solutions and synthesize complex environmental data for business insights will have unmatched employability.

Of course, alongside understanding criteria like science-based targets and compliance benchmarks, conveying skills in cultural competence, systems thinking and change management are crucial for the collaboration vital to driving sustainability programs in multifaceted global companies. With COP28 emphasizing equity and climate justice in 2024, diversity and social conscience will be demanded hallmarks.

While the scale of the climate crisis is daunting, those leading the sustainability transition will transform entire industries, unlock trillions in emerging market value and save lives through environmental action – making this career purpose unmatched. The rare combination of lucrative employment and meaningful impact ahead is a powerful multiplier for talent development in sustainability today.

What do I  need to study to acquire sustainability skills?

To acquire sustainability skills, you can pursue a variety of courses tailored to different aspects of sustainability.

  1. Environmental Science and Sustainability Courses:
    • Introduction to Environmental Science
    • Principles of Sustainability
    • Environmental Policy and Management
    • Sustainable Development
    • Climate Change Science and Policy
  2. Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technology Courses:
    • Renewable Energy Technologies
    • Sustainable Energy Systems
    • Solar Energy Engineering
    • Wind Energy Fundamentals
    • Sustainable Building Design and Construction
  3. Business and Sustainability Courses:
    • Sustainable Business Practices
    • Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
    • Green Marketing and Sustainable Branding
    • Sustainable Supply Chain Management
    • Circular Economy: Concepts and Practices
  4. Social and Economic Sustainability Courses:
    • Social Sustainability and Equity
    • Economics of Sustainable Development
    • Sustainable Urban Development
    • Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems
    • Community Development and Sustainable Livelihoods
  5. Environmental Law and Policy Courses:
    • Environmental Law and Policy
    • International Environmental Governance
    • Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)
    • Natural Resource Management and Policy
    • Environmental Ethics and Justice
  6. Data Analysis and Sustainability Courses:
    • Data Analytics for Sustainability
    • Sustainability Reporting and Metrics
    • Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Sustainability
    • Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Environmental Applications
    • Environmental Data Science
  7. Sustainability Leadership and Governance Courses:
    • Sustainable Leadership and Governance
    • Sustainable Business Strategy
    • Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): Implementation and Impact
    • Corporate Governance for Sustainability
    • Stakeholder Engagement and Sustainability
  8. Sustainable Tourism and Hospitality Courses:
    • Sustainable Tourism Management
    • Ecotourism Principles and Practices
    • Sustainable Hospitality Operations
    • Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Tourism
    • Tourism Impact Assessment and Management
  9. Ethics and Sustainability Courses:
    • Ethical Issues in Sustainability
    • Environmental Ethics and Decision Making
    • Values-Based Leadership for Sustainability
    • Ethical Consumption and Sustainable Lifestyles
    • Sustainable Development and Social Justice
  10. Professional Certifications in Sustainability:
    • LEED Green Associate (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)
    • GRI Standards (Global Reporting Initiative)
    • CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) Certifications
    • Certified Sustainability Practitioner (CSP)
    • Sustainable Finance and Investing Certifications

Steven Galvin

The 10 Most In-Demand Skills In 2024
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