Course information


1 year full-time; 2 years part-time

Course overview

This programme will provide you with fundamental knowledge of the retail industry, introduce you to a diverse range of contemporary issues and teach you skills in creative and cutting-edge solutions based on core intellectual and practical frameworks.

The MA International Retail Business, Sustainability and Technologies combines retail business/management studies with a deep exploration of sustainability principles and practice, technological solutions to contemporary challenges, and building the requisite skills of leadership to drive these solutions forward. The programme differs from conventional retail management courses which exclusively or predominantly focus on the narrow 'management' aspects of retail business. Instead, we adopt a multi-disciplinary approach that introduces you to a diverse range of contemporary issues and provides knowledge and professional skills in cutting-edge solutions based on three core areas of expertise: International Retail Business, Sustainability and Leadership, and Retail Data and Technology.

Study across disciplines

  • Since the term 'retail' includes all retailing sectors (e.g. automobiles, groceries, electronics, fashion, etc), this programme examines 'retail' not as a sole business subject, but as a multi-disciplinary integrated study field permeating myriad areas of social-cultural and economic life. The programme also aims to challenge established frameworks for understanding global retail business, with a strong emphasis on contextualisation and the incorporation of localised perspectives and frameworks.

Prepare for a career with a combination of theory and practice

  • As one of the most highly globalised industries at a time of significant change, the retail sector has an urgent need for personnel (new recruits and middle-level managers) who not only understand core business principles and practices but also have the requisite mindset to engage with the social and cultural contexts within which their businesses operate.
  • This programme's interdisciplinary approach augments a traditionally business studies approach to equip you with business management fundamentals in both theory and practice. You will also be exposed to relevant knowledge and critical understanding from other disciplines, set within a variety of economic, social, and cultural contexts that more closely reflect the true business world. You will come away with a much broader understanding of the retail sector and why certain business decisions should or should not be made. These essential critical thinking, analytical, and practical skills will make you extremely marketable in the retail world of the immediate future.

Engage with pressing contemporary issues

  • The last two decades have seen the retail industry and its socio-cultural context encounter unprecedented challenges, which require a number of changes in approach, philosophy, and practice. Among the more important of these are the environmental pressures associated with the retail sector, linked to the ecological footprint of the products it sells, the resources it devours, the waste it generates, and the pressures associated with consumerism in general.
  • The sector is also facing significant existential challenges as it struggles to navigate the rapid changes in globalisation, consumer preferences, and demographics, as well as the proliferation of social media, online retail platforms, and seismic shifts such as those caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. The retail industry is currently facing a historic watershed as it responds to simultaneous demands for stability, adaptability, relevance, sustainability, social responsibility, inventiveness, technological innovation, and financial viability.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Paul Yuille or Gerald Lidstone.

What you'll study

Compulsory modules

You'll take the following compulsory modules:

Module title Credits
International retail Management 30 credits
Sustainability Thinking and Leadership: Consumption & Development 30 credits
Retail Data and Technology 15 credits
Dissertation 60 credits

Optional modules

You will then make up the remaining 45 credits by choosing optional modules from the Institute for Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship. Modules are subject to change on an annual basis and recent examples of optional modules have included:

Module title Credits
Creative Social Media 30 credits
Luxury Brands: Retail, Digital and Marketing 30 Credits
Culture, Tourism and Regeneration 30 credits
Cultural Relations and Diplomacy II: Explorations 30 credits
Entrepreneurial Modelling: From Idea to Articulation 15 credits
Technological Innovation & Market Creation 15 credits
Marketing Strategy 15 credits
Consumer Behaviour 15 credits
Creating Customer Experiences 15 Credits
Leadership and Talent Management 15 credits
Critical Social Media Practices 15 credits
Consumer Citizenship and Visual Media 30 credits
Social Media in Everyday Life: A global perspective 30 credits

Download the programme specification.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Entry requirements

You should have a minimum of 2:1 (or equivalent) in a subject relevant to the programme or relevant equivalent experience. Entrepreneurs or industry professionals may gain entry by prior accredited learning, subject to stringent evaluation criteria.

International qualifications

We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing and no element lower than 6.0 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

Fees, funding & scholarships

Annual tuition fees

These are the fees for students starting their programme in the 2024/2025 academic year.

  • Home - full-time: £12520
  • Home - part-time: £6260
  • International - full-time: £22640

If your fees are not listed here, please check our postgraduate fees guidance or contact the Fees Office, who can also advise you about how to pay your fees.

It’s not currently possible for international students to study part-time under a student visa. If you think you might be eligible to study part-time while being on another visa type, please contact our Admissions Team for more information.

If you are looking to pay your fees please see our guide to making a payment.

Additional costs

In addition to your tuition fees, you'll be responsible for any additional costs associated with your course, such as buying stationery and paying for photocopying. You can find out more about what you need to budget for on our study costs page.

There may also be specific additional costs associated with your programme. This can include things like paying for field trips or specialist materials for your assignments. Please check the programme specification for more information.

Funding opportunities

Find out more about postgraduate fees and explore funding opportunities. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

How to apply

You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system. 

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:

  • Details of your academic qualifications
  • The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively a copy of your academic reference
  • Copies of your educational transcripts or certificates
  • personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online. Please see our guidance on writing a postgraduate statement and ensure that your statement answers the following questions: 
    • What is your educational/professional background and how does this relate to your decision to choose this particular MA?
    • What are your expectations of this MA/what do you want to achieve through this programme?
    • Why and how do you think this MA at Goldsmiths particularly aligns with your future goals and aspirations?

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications for students wanting to start the following September. 

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification. 

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an earlier application deadline.

Find out more about applying.

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