During the week of September 18, 2017, government, business, UN and civil society leaders from across the globe have come together in New York to address global challenges that no single organization or sector can tackle alone. Two years after the ratification of the United Nations’ 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the COP21 Paris agreement, it’s time to assess how far the world has come. The spotlight will be on pathways and solutions towards achieving the SDGs and the role businesses can and should play. Join this free open online course, Sustainability Through Digital Transformation, to explore how companies can embrace the opportunities that are arising. In this course, you’ll learn about the evolution of sustainability within organizations in the areas of integrated reporting, social and environmental impact creation, and responsible investment. You’ll become familiar with recent sustainability frameworks, including the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), and gain an understanding of how digitization can enable companies to become more successful while contributing to the SDGs.
Monday, October 16, 2017 09:00 (UTC) to Tuesday, November 14, 2017 09:01 (UTC)
Language: English

Course information


Course Summary

Digitization is the word on everyone’s lips. Businesses, governments, and other public organizations are busy trying to define their own digital roadmap. But how is this connected with sustainability? Events like the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Paris or the World Economic Forum in Davos made it clear that if businesses want to survive, they have to learn how to become sustainable. And digitization plays a key role in enabling this. “Sustainability through Digital Transformation” allows you to explore the opportunities digitization offers to further drive sustainability. The course shows how the power of technology can help companies become more successful and at the same time contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Together, we’ll explore opportunities to master the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”. We’ll look at examples of how to leverage digital innovation to transform industry sectors, including health, mobility, financial services, and education for the better.

Course Characteristics

Course Content

Week 1: Evolving Organizational Sustainability
Week 2: Digitization Creates Social Impact
Week 3: Digitization and Resource Productivity
Week 4: Final Exam

Target Audience

  • Students, young professionals, and experts
  • Professionals in the public and private sector
  • Professionals working with SAP customers, SAP customers’ suppliers, prospects, or partners
  • SAP employees
  • The general public

Course Requirements

  • Basic understanding of business and administration processes
  • Basis understanding of industry value chains
  • Basic understanding of information technology (IT)
  • Interest in sustainability

Development Systems

No development systems are required for this course.

About further Content Experts

Christine Susanne Müller

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Christine Susanne Müller joined the sustainability core team in 2012 as transformation and change manager for sustainability. She is responsible for coordinating and executing all change activities, programs, and projects related to SAP's sustainability goals from a holistic change perspective.  

Since 2001, Christine Susanne has worked in various change management and communications roles at SAP on a local, regional, and global level.

Ulrike Fritz-Welz

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Ulrike Fritz-Welz is a technical writer and knowledge transfer specialist with much experience in creating and operating Massive Open Online Courses. She was among the first members of the openSAP team.

After years of private commitment to environmental protection and sustainability, she now makes her passion the focus of her professional life.

Previous version of this course.

Previous version of this course is available here: Sustainability Through Digital Transformation (April 13, 2016 to Thursday, May 12, 2016)

Course contents


  • Week 1:

    Evolving Organizational Sustainability
  • Week 2:

    Digitization Creates Social Impact
  • Week 3:

    Digitization and Resource Productivity
  • I like, I Wish:

    I Like I Wish: Welcome
  • Final Exam:

    Good Luck!

Enroll me for this course


If you would like to enroll for this course, there are no formal prerequisites or limitations. The course is free and open for everyone. Just register for an account on openSAP and go for the course!

Enroll me now

Dates and Statistics


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Learners enrolled: 1324

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Dr. Will Ritzrau joined the sustainability core team in 2013 after 14 years of various internal and customer-facing roles at SAP.

Will is responsible for establishing and expanding sustainability in the core business of SAP. Prior to SAP, Will worked as a biological oceanographer in international climate research programs.

Will’s profile on SCN.

Dr. Barbara Flügge heads the initiative on empowering ecosystems at SAP. Her focus is on ecosystems embracing business and service opportunities for public and private organizations. Barbara leads the Smart Logistics and Smart Mobility team, designing seamless mobility and digital service models.

Prior to this, Barbara managed programs for Ariba, Arthur Andersen Management Consulting, and PriceWaterhouse

Barbara’s profile on SCN.

Daniel Schmid was appointed chief sustainability officer at SAP in 2014. Since 2008, he has been engaged in transforming SAP into a role model of a sustainable organization, establishing mid and long-term sustainability targets. Linking non-financial and financial performance is a key achievement of Daniel and his team. His focus has now extended towards the wider impact of SAP’s business activities.

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