Financial markets are the primary directors of economic activity in a capitalist global society, but they also have an important societal role in encouraging investments that are beneficial to natural and human ecosystems. Behavior can be greatly influenced by the availability and price of capital finance, and sustainability factors—environmental, social, and governance (ESG)—must be reflected in the world as understood by finance professionals in order to be real and not merely symbolic.
A new book, titled "The Financial Ecosystem: The Role of Finance in Achieving Sustainability" outlines the rationale for and methods used in six areas where financial acumen has been harnessed to the goal of combining monetary return with long run sustainability. In this event, authors Satyajit Bose, Guo Dong, and Anne Simpson will be joined by other sustainable finance experts to discuss each of the six areas and their specific roles in advancing specific measures of sustainability. They will also illustrate analytical tools and specialized data sources essential to those interested in increasing the level of social responsibility embedded in economic activity, and explore educational opportunities such as Columbia’s Certification in Sustainable Finance.
• Steve Cohen, Professor of Practice, School of International and Public Affairs; Senior Vice Dean, School of Professional Studies, Columbia University
• Anne Simpson, Director, Board Governance and Strategy, CalPERS
• Satyajit Bose, Associate Director, Program in Sustainability Management; Associate Professor of Practice, School of Professional Studies, Columbia University
• Andrea Armeni, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Transform Finance
• Michelle Dunstan, Portfolio Manager, Global ESG Improvers Strategy and Global Commodity Equity Fund, AllianceBernstein
• Guo Dong, Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs; Associate Research Scholar, the Earth Institute, Columbia University
• Krishnan Sharma, Chief, Strategic Engagement Unit, Financing for Sustainable Development Office, United Nations