Program Experience

Highlights and Key Outcomes

In Wharton ESG Executive Certificate for Strategists, you will:

  • Develop a rigorous foundation for integrating ESG factors into strategic analysis
  • Analyze the efficacy of strategic responses to ESG risks and opportunities
  • Improve ESG communications, disclosure, and data systems
  • Build integrated project plans and dashboards encompassing ESG factors
  • Effectively engage stakeholders in the most complex and conflictual stakeholder environments

The Wharton ESG Executive Certificate for Strategists is comprised of one month of introductory content (Wharton ESG Essentials) immediately followed by an additional month of specialized strategy content. This advanced certificate is designed to quickly catapult corporate leaders to the forefront of ongoing ESG decision making, empowering them to act as informed, prepared catalysts for change amid urgent and complex constraints and opportunities.

Blended Online Program Structure

This program’s blended format is designed to produce maximum, immediate impact for the busy executive. Participants will join live online sessions for two hours once a week over eight weeks. Sessions will be led by award-winning, tenured Wharton faculty who are pioneering academic research and leading the dialogue in the rapidly evolving ESG field.

Broadcasted and facilitated live from a technologically advanced classroom, the program prioritizes live engagement and employs a host of instructional modalities to enhance the learning experience: in-class discussions, case work, small-group breakout sessions, role playing and several competitive and engaging simulations. In addition, participants will work through self-paced content at their convenience in between live sessions.

Experience and Impact

In Wharton ESG Executive Certificate for Strategists, you will build on the knowledge in Wharton ESG Essentials to learn how to formulate, advocate for, and implement strategies that address ESG factors.

The program presents an overview of the climate transition’s impact on corporate strategy, including the risks from both the physical effects of climate change as well as the regulatory responses to facilitate the transition to a net-zero economy. Participants will analyze how these and other environmental risks influence corporate strategy and what tools and resources are available to reduce risk exposure. Participants will also gain perspective on the green technology and innovation sector – where cost curves are rapidly evolving and leading to non-linear dynamics that threaten to sunset some industries and give birth to new ones.

The Wharton ESG Executive Certificate for Strategists additionally arms participants with data-backed tools to manage the nuance of ESG strategy. Participants will engage in issue and stakeholder mapping, learning how to integrate pertinent data into usable and accessible dashboards. They will also look at best practices in managing stakeholder relationships — particularly from the strategists’ unique position working cross-departmentally, as well as toggling between internal and external stakeholders and managing deep-seated conflicts between their stakeholders.

Session topics include:

  • Sustainability Strategy
  • Climate Strategy
  • Geo-Strategy
  • Stakeholder Engagement Strategy

Those interested in learning more about Wharton ESG Essentials, or additional specialized certificates, can visit here.

Participants who have successfully completed Wharton ESG Essentials as a standalone program can apply for and enroll in a certificate track within one year of Essentials completion.

Convince Your Supervisor

Here’s a justification letter you can edit and send to your supervisor to help you make the case for attending this Wharton program.

Due to our application review period, applications submitted after 12:00 p.m. ET on Friday for programs beginning the following Monday may not be processed in time to grant admission. Applicants will be contacted by a member of our Client Relations Team to discuss options for future programs and dates.

Who Should Attend

The Wharton ESG Executive Certificate for Strategists is designed for professionals in the ESG field who specialize in developing and implementing strategy, including consultants, business development professionals, in-house ESG specialists, project managers, and other cross-functional leadership positions that have a stake in their firm’s ESG strategy execution.

Fluency in English, written and spoken, is required for participation in Wharton Executive Education programs unless otherwise indicated.


Arthur Van Benthem

Arthur van Benthem, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Academic Director

Associate Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy, Faculty Co-Director, Wharton Climate Center

Research Interests: Energy economics, environmental economics, public economics

Witold Henisz

Witold Henisz, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Vice Dean and Faculty Director, ESG Initiative; Deloitte & Touche Professor of Management in Honor of Russell E. Palmer, former Managing Partner

Research Interests: Political and social risk management; project management; ESG integration; stakeholder engagement

Sarah Light

Sarah Light, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Legal Studies & Business Ethics; Faculty Co-Director, Wharton Climate Center

Mary-Hunter McDonnell

Mary-Hunter McDonnell, JD, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Management; Faculty Co-Director, Zicklin Center for Governance and Business Ethics

Research Interests: Organizational theory (political sociology, institutional theory); nonmarket strategy; corporate governance; corporate misconduct and punishment

Nicolaj Siggelkow

Nicolaj Siggelkow, PhDSee Faculty Bio

David M. Knott Professor; Professor of Management; Co-Director, Mack Institute for Innovation Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Competitive strategy, firms as systems of interconnected choices

Date, Location, & Fees

September 1 – October 31, 2023Live Online$6,750Every Wednesday for four consecutive weeks in September
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT
Every Tuesday in October
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT

Download the program schedule, including session details and format.

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Prices are subject to change.

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