- This course is at the forefront of new economic thinking, drawing upon diverse disciplines including psychology, anthropology and living system design
- Gain a refined understanding of economics, together with tools, methodologies and communication skills to incorporate into your future career
MA: 1 year FT, 2 years PT.
Other routes are available, including online options – see ‘Learning Pathways’
start date: september
full Term dates
Term Dates – Academic Year 2021 – 2022
Autumn Term: Monday 13 September – Friday 17 December 2021
Winter Term: Monday 10 January – Friday 1 April 2022
Spring Term: Monday 25 April – Friday 1 July 2022
Dissertation Deadline: mid-August 2022
Onsite Teaching Weeks
13–17 September 2021: Welcome Week (at Schumacher College)
20 September–1 October 2021: Module 1 (Residential Weeks at Schumacher College)
8–19 November 2021: Module 2 (Residential Weeks at Schumacher College or online)
10–21 January 2022: Module 3 (Residential Weeks at Schumacher College)
28 February–11 March 2022: Module 4 (Residential Weeks at Schumacher College)
An online version of this course is available – see ‘learning pathways’, below.
next application deadline
All upcoming application and decision deadlines can be found here.
Our degree programmes are designed to suit the complexities of modern life, allowing you to live where you live and work where you work, whilst studying the subject you are passionate about as a member of our wide-reaching learning community.
Some qualifications are offered part-time – these are indicated below.
MAster's (ft/pt; 180 credits)
Regenerative Economics is a low-residency programme with 4 x 30-credit modules and 1 x 60-credit Dissertation or Final Project module.
The course is available full time over one year (UK, EU or international students) or part time over two years (UK students only).
Part-time students complete the core theoretical modules in Academic Year 1, and the core studio modules and dissertation in Academic Year 2 for the full masters, or the core theoretical modules in Academic Year 1, and the core studio modules in Academic Year 2 for the part-time PG Diploma.
Postgraduate Diploma (ft/pt; 120 credits)
A full-time (1 year) or part-time programme (2 years, UK students only) with 4 x 30 credit modules. Students taking the full-time option will study all four modules during the first two terms. For full details on part-time pathways, please contact us.
Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)
A full-time programme with 2 x 30 credit modules. Students will study both modules during term one.
First module only (30 credits)
To apply for the accredited single module option, apply in the usual way, selecting the ‘Module One’ option during the application process.
Short course (unaccredited)
The modules of this programme can be studied on a standalone basis as unaccredited short courses.
For full information – and to purchase a non-accredited course place – head to the short course page (opens in new website).
All options for this course are offered on a low-residency model, and are also available online-only. Please ensure you select the online-only option during your application as required.
MA Regenerative Economics challenges and offers alternative perspectives to mainstream economics programmes by looking through the lens of ecology, as if both people and planet mattered equally.
The programme adopts an interrogative approach, exploring diverse global economic philosophies and models. The low-residency structure of this programme enables professionals to combine work and study.
On this course, you’ll explore alternative economic models, many of which were once considered marginal but could now help us radically rethink our existing economic systems. What changes are needed to make our societies more resilient in the face of climate change, biodiversity loss and our reliance on fossil fuels and to address financial instability, food insecurity and poverty?
In recent years we have seen huge political and social upheaval around the globe, bringing our societies to a critical point which now calls for a new way of economic thinking. Schumacher College has developed a reputation for pioneering radical new thinking, attracting leading international teachers, practitioners and activists. Our economics programme has inspired and supported numerous organisations and people in their endeavours to achieve a more sustainable and equitable world.
We continue to maintain our partnership with the Business School at the University of Plymouth.
Hosted by highly respected radical economists and complemented by an international visiting faculty of teachers and practitioners, this programme offers the opportunity to join those at the forefront of new ecological, economic thinking.
Skills you’ll gain on this course
- develop an understanding of how living system design principles can be applied in the socio-economic realm – in short how we can ecologise economy rather than economising ecology
- co-create theoretical principles for a new approach to economics – exploring what a post-growth economy might look like and charting pathways to get there
- work alongside new economy pioneers in the creation and refinement of qualitatively new, mission-based enterprises and other economic structures
- develop the capacity to communicate complex ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences
- explore new economic systems and behaviours not just in abstract theory, but as an engaged participant using head, heart and hands
- enhance your skills as a researcher in the domain of new economics
programme structure & modules
This MA programme consist of 5 modules (4 taught and 1 dissertation module). If you are taking the residential option, the first 2 weeks of each taught module are timetabled teaching periods, where you must live on site (or nearby) and participate in the learning community. So there are 4 two-week periods, spread across 7 months.
The remaining 4 months are the dissertation research and writing period. You may choose to return home for the duration of the dissertation, and will no longer be sponsored by us for your Tier 4 visa.
Outside of the two-week periods, international students (only) may request accommodation and full board onsite at Dartington for terms 1 and 2: this would require you to participate in the learning community activities. Alternatively you can opt to live nearby or anywhere in the UK and travel to and from Dartington when required. We now also offer a fully online pathway.
We have a limited number of residential places available for international students. Apply as early as possible and select the accommodation option on the application form.
Module One: Ecology and Economy (30 credits)
In the first week of the module, strong emphasis will be placed on the creation of the learning community and the development of personal and group inquiry practices. Introductory sessions will be held on the key areas of holistic science to be covered in more depth during the home study period along with initial individual and group enquiries into how these may translate into the socio-economic sphere.
Module Two: Beyond Growth (30 credits)
We will provide an overview of both the history of economic thought and of heterodox approaches to the discipline from various traditions. An introductory overview will be provided to the growth dynamics within our current economic deign. Sessions will be given on future scenarios planning.
Module Three: Regenerative Enterprise (30 credits)
Teaching during this module will be focused on identifying research projects on which students will work collaboratively during the remainder of this module. It is likely that some of these projects will emerge from initiatives in which the students are already engaged and others will be proposed and co-created by college faculty. We will also look at presentations on relevant new economy case study materials from around the world as well as introductions to relevant research orientations and methodologies.
Module Four: Changing The Frame (30 credits)
You will begin with an introduction to the psychological and neuroscientific foundations of our cognitive processes. The power of verbal and visual metaphors and narrative frames will be explored with case study reference to both effective an ineffective communication strategies. Special emphasis will be laid on the use of language to radically change individual, group and societal understanding at an ontological level.
Dissertation (60 credits)
The dissertation enables students to pursue a Regenerative Economics project of their own interest, or an academic essay interrogating the further evolution of Regenerative Economics theory and practice.
Watch: What to expect from the Regenerative Economics programme
Qualification(s) required for entry to the MA
BA/BSc (Honours) Degree A first degree
Where the first degree is not a 2.1, or in an unrelated subject, further support of the application or experience may be required.
Other non-standard awards or experience
A willingness engage with the field of Regenerative Economics. Candidates will be considered with prior credited learning and prior experiences subject to interview.* Candidates will be considered with appropriate APL (UoP Regs) subject to interview.
All applicants are required to attend an interview, either at the College or online. During the interview we will look for: evidence of intellectual clarity during interview; a clearly formulated purpose for taking the course; focused interests and a clear understanding of the ethos and philosophy of the College; readiness and ability to live and work in a communal setting.
*For further information please contact our admissions team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ruth Potts is head of our Regenerative Economics programme. She is a researcher, facilitator, artist and activist who also works on the Green New Deal in the office of Caroline Lucas MP.
Ruth is a leading member of the secretariat for the Global Alliance for a Green New Deal, an alliance of 27 lawmakers from 22 nations working collaboratively for transformative economic change. In 2020, Ruth brought together a transdisciplinary team to deliver Reset, an inquiry that opened up space for a broad cross-section of the UK public to explore their experience of the first Covid lockdown and discuss how they might want life to change so that it is greener and fairer.
Previously, Ruth was a senior lecturer in Ecological Design Thinking at Schumacher College, co-developing the innovative MA. She initiated and was Artistic Advisor to, Utopia 2016: A Year of Imagination and Possibility at Somerset House, the Courtauld Institute and Gallery and King’s College London. Ruth was Head of Communications at NEF (the New Economics Foundation) for almost a decade where she helped shape the narrative of new economics, and was a co-editor of Red Pepper from 2016-2019. She is a co-author of The New Materialism, covered by the Guardian, the Telegraph and the Financial Times.
Ruth’s research and arts practice focuses on the phenomenon of political agency, following Donna Haraway’s demand that we ‘stay with the trouble’. Ruth is firmly committed to broadening perception of the possible, and is a member of the Cambridge Commission on Scaling Sustainable Behaviour Change and the Rapid Transition Task Force.
Jonathan Dawson is a sustainability educator and Programme Coordinator and Senior Lecturer for our Regenerative Economics programme.
Until recently a long-term resident at the Findhorn ecovillage and a former President of the Global Ecovillage Network, he has around 20 years’ experience as a researcher, author, consultant and project manager in the field of small enterprise development in Africa and South Asia. Jonathan is the principal author of the Gaia Education sustainable economy curriculum, drawn from best practice within ecovillages worldwide, that has been endorsed by UNITAR and adopted by UNESCO as a valuable contribution to the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. He has taught this curriculum at universities, ecovillages and community centres in Brazil, Spain and Scotland.
Jay is a Lecturer for Regenerative Economics. He is also a co-founder of the Totnes REconomy Project, and associate lecturer in economics at Plymouth University.
Before moving to the UK Jay was based in Silicon Valley in the US as an entrepreneur and consultant in the ‘green business movement’. He holds an MBA from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies and a BA in Philosophy from San Jose State University. He’s also a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Graduates leave to work in:
- Start-ups and local enterprises
- Community organisations
- NGOs: especially those tackling climate emergency
- Ethical Business: making systems more sustainable and socially just
- Economics: analysing how markets responds to various stressors
- Education: teaching in a multi-disciplinary setting
Ministry of the Environment, BrazilRead More
“The MA brought me the opportunity to enquire on the nature of what we call “the economy”, through exciting hetherodox lenses such as systems thinking, deep ecology and phenomenology, immersed in a vibrant and loving learning community. It opened up new possibilities of making sense of the world’s challenges and the role that public policy can play in the transition towards a regenerative society. I’m currently dedicating to raise awereness about the limitations of the neoliberal and growth-dependent economic narrative in enviromental policy, and hope to nurture space for policy designs based on broader goals such as resilience and ecological well-being.”
Co-founder, La Ferme de FroidfontaineRead More
There are currently eight entrepreneurs at the farm but the aim is that it will become a place of economic, social and natural diversity for up to 20 projects. www.froidefontaine.be
He says: “Go to Schumacher College if you feel the calling. You will learn to know yourself, and thus what you need or want.”
Communities Lead, Doughnut Economics Action LabRead More
He now works as Communities Lead for Kate Raworth and her team at the Doughnut Economics Action Lab in Oxford.
He says: “The people, place and foundational practices that make up Schumacher College are extraordinary and its impact on me goes far beyond academic learning.”
Director-General, David Suzuki FoundationRead More
Most recently, Yannick has been facilitating conversations with decision makers across Canada, highlighting various examples of beyond-GDP economics. Yannick holds a Phd in Marine Geology from the University of Toronto and a Masters in Economics for Transition from Schumacher College/University of Plymouth in the UK.
Project-lead and Systems Thinker, nangu.ecoRead More
Francisco says: “I was a ‘sustainability practitioner’ many years before I joined Schumacher, leading an ecological market called feriaverde.org. I thought I was well informed of the ecological challenges and potential solutions out there. After a year in Schumacher I realized how little I knew and my worldview was profoundly enriched. I wholeheartedly recommend the program to fellow change makers and leaders.”
Co-founder, Schumi Learning GardenRead More
More excitingly, SLG is growing into an eco-village with more and more people settling down and developing their right livelihood. New initiatives include an organic herbal farm, a bakery/cafe, a wood workshop, a natural dye workshop, a few guesthouses, etc.
Ying also has a master degree in Peace Studies from University of Notre Dame. Besides running SLG, she is also an interpreter and consultant for community development organisations. If you ask her what is the most important gift she received from the college, she will say: “the will to protect and faith in creation”.
Director of Land and Housing Justice, Sustainable Economies Law CenterRead More
At the Law Center, he co-leads or contributes to the Law Center’s Housing, Worker Self-Directed Nonprofits, Farmland, and Money & Finance Programs.
Project manager – revitalising places & economiesRead More
She says: “Thanks to Covid-19, I had no job to come back to from my maternity leave, and I had to redefine myself. Now I’m an independent practitioner, and involved in several projects. I support an establishment of a local coin in several municipalities in our area in partnership with an Israeli platform, and I work in a Bedouin city called Rahat, developing a program to assimilate sustainability principles as part of the core values in different sectors (education, community, city planning etc.). Finally, I’m leading on a project with a rural council that wants to align all its economic activity with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”
Founder and General Manager, Everybody EatsRead More
The pay-as-you-feel model is inclusive; it allows people who can afford to pay for a meal to do so, and perhaps contribute to future meals, while giving more vulnerable people an opportunity to enjoy a dignified experience without feeling any guilt or stigma. Everybody Eats now has weekly pop-up restaurants in Auckland City, Papamoa and Wellington, as well as a permanent restaurant in Onehunga. Nick is also a winner of the Kiwibank New Zealander of The Year, Local Hero Award.
Author and ‘Renegade Economist’Read More
This year, she also became an Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity at the International Inequalities Institute at the London School of Economics and next year she will be coming out with a book about how to tackle inequality in Silicon Valley. She lives in a cabin at the edge of the forest in the Santa Cruz mountains of California and thinks fondly of the footpaths behind the college as she walks through the redwoods.
Community Development Project leaderRead More
Sho says: “Our citizens aim to re-think this crisis as a chance to come together. ‘Can Do Festival’ has played a platform role for all people in Fukui to champion community development and to drive a better future society”.
Founding Partner and of Impact, Value SquaredRead More
“I’m a monetary adviser for Kora – a start-up company issuing a complementary currency which rewards sustainable behavior. And finally, I’m involved in giving lecturing and workshops about sustainable economics and complex systems, in academic institutions, think tanks, hubs, private and public sector organizations and more.
Sustainability Consultant and FacilitatorRead More
Eliza has been offering courses and study groups about new economics in Brazil, aiming to amplify the debate and raise consciousness about the topic in the country. She is also part of The Economy of Francesco, a global movement with local action, sponsored by Pope Francis, that aims to “give a new soul” to the global economy.
live chats & open days
latest news & blogs
Lecturer in Regenerative Economics at Schumacher College, Jay Tompt, writes that after the events of the past 18 months the message is clear: we need an economics that “affirms life”.
Schumacher College and Dartington School of Arts are increasing financial support for students from less well-off backgrounds who want to study at the colleges.
Jonathan Dawson, the Programme Lead for our highly-respected MA Regenerative Economics, blogs on the often forgotten but increasingly important philosophical dimension in modern day economics.