High Performance Buildings

Program Goals

Technical knowledge

The Master of Engineering Leadership (MEL) in High-Performance Buildings has two primary areas of focus: architectural courses on green building design and engineering courses on energy modelling and design. You’ll bring these technical perspectives together in two interdisciplinary capstone projects where you will work with clients to retrofit an existing building’s energy system and design an energy system for a new building.


Collaborating with your peers under the direction of leading researchers and instructors from industry, you will work in world-class facilities and multidisciplinary research centres to:

  • understand the critical issues in green building design, from the planning stages through development and operations
  • implement energy modelling applications and design state-of-the-art building systems
  • develop your skills in project management, leadership, team building, effective communications and sustainability to deliver multidisciplinary projects
  • use data for technical and business decision-making
  • apply advanced life-cycle assessment methods to projects, products and services in resource industries
  • perform risk and uncertainty analyses for complex environmental systems and apply multi-criteria decision-making frameworks for risk management

“Problems that arise in building design often emerge from the fact that engineers and architects aren’t speaking the same language; our intent is to build project work teams that bring both groups together and teach students to communicate across fields through real-world design projects.” – Steve Rogak

Business foundations

Professional success requires both technical understanding and managerial and business competence. Through courses offered by UBC Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School, you will explore business strategy and innovation, operations and logistics, project management, and organizational leadership. These classes will enable you to gain foundational business knowledge in:

  • managing processes in manufacturing systems and supply chains
  • assessing visual analytics techniques for analysis and communication
  • evaluating project management processes and demonstrating their use
  • analyzing sustainability opportunities across a range of industries
  • presenting recommendations for organizational leadership challenges using a case study analysis approach
  • understanding business decision-making through the lens of key functional areas (strategy, marketing, operations and logistics, accounting and finance, human resources and organizational behaviour, and entrepreneurship)
  • understanding the basic principles of organizational strategy and innovation

Leadership and interpersonal skills

Effectively managing people and successfully leading teams requires a wide range of interpersonal skills. The MEL offers professional development workshops throughout the 12-month program. These extra-curricular sessions cover topics that include communication, teamwork, coaching and mentoring. Group projects and collaborative problem-solving are embedded into the MEL courses, creating ongoing opportunities for you to practice your skills as a manager and leader.

Learn more about some of the most significant challenges being faced within the industry and how this innovative leadership master’s degree can place you in a position to address some of our world’s most pressing problems.

Keep Reading: Course Information