Financial markets are critical to sustainable development. As outlined by the Canadian Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance, Canada’s transition to sustainable development will require “…a sea change in the interactions between innovation, policy and regulation, consumer behaviours, risk management, and investment patterns. In each of these areas, the financial system plays a critical role in directing capital flows, managing complex risks and unlocking opportunity.”
The emerging field of ‘sustainable finance’ is starting to channel financial sector expertise, ingenuity and influence towards addressing sustainability challenges. The incorporation of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in investment instruments and decision-making is growing rapidly. In Canada alone, ESG-related assets have now reached $3.2 trillion, representing a growth of 48 per cent since 2018.
However, there remains an urgent need to expand the development and deployment of new financial instruments and solutions that address the priority challenges facing communities and ecosystems in Canada.
The BSV Sustainable Finance Priority enables the development of innovative financial instruments that can catalyze the transition to sustainable development. Research focuses on key priorities for sustainable development in Canada – including ecosystem conservation, green infrastructure, blended finance, and investment in the success of Indigenous communities.
BSV Centre faculty also play a critical role in educating Ivey students on sustainable finance and ESG issues.
Learn more about our sustainable finance activities below.
Featured Event: Sustainable finance - the reshaping of capital markets and the new era of corporate reporting (March 11, 2021)
Ivey has a unique concentration of top researchers who study sustainable finance. Learn more about recent papers and publications in the area of sustainable finance.
Accounting & sustainability at Ivey
Accounting, in many ways, holds the keys to advancing corporate sustainability. What organizations measure and report – and just as importantly, what they don’t – drives strategy and performance.
Funding awarded for conservation finance project
Diane-Laure Arjaliès has been awarded sixty thousand dollars from the Economics and Environmental Policy Research Network (EEPRN) for her research on innovative conservation finance instruments.
Bringing together circular economy and accounting research
Diane-Laure Arjaliès discusses a new call for papers that combines the best of circular economy and accounting research in the hopes of finding solutions to the some of the world’s toughest problems.
Accounting project collects counter-accounts during COVID-19
A new accounting research project, entitled Breaking Boundaries, is building a snapshot of accounts and counter-accounts during the COVID-19 crisis.
Integrated reporting is like God: No one has met him, but everybody talks about him
This paper analyzes the process of how a company adopted "integrated reporting", a management innovation that merges financial and non-financial reporting.
How investment managers accommodate societal issues in financial decisions
In this paper, Ivey faculty Diane-Laure Arjaliès and Tima Bansal, investigate how using visuals to represent ESG data can help investment managers accommodate societal issues in their financial decisions.
Engagement & Outreach
Change cannot happen in isolation. That’s why we are committed to engaging with and learning from other scholars, practitioners, and organizations working on sustainable finance.
Below are some examples of our recent engagements and outreach activities.
Event: Sustainable Finance - the reshaping of capital markets
On March 11, leading figures in Canada's financial sector weighed in on the rapid rise of sustainable finance and its profound implications for all businesses.
New financial tool to revitalize natural environment
A new innovation in financial instruments is helping conserve the natural environment in Southern Ontario. Professor Diane-Laure Arjaliés is part of the team putting it together.
Appointment to UN advisory group
Diane-Laure Arjaliès was recently appointed to the United Nations Global Compact Expert Network, an international advisory group made up of approximately 70 cross-sectoral experts.
Canada’s financial markets are stunting our growth
In this article published by The Conversation, Ivey faculty Diane-Laure Arjaliès and Tima Bansal discuss how Canadian industry will react to Canada’s Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance.
In order to have real-world impact, we believe knowledge and experience need to be shared with our students and future leaders.
Below are some of the ways we are shaping the way in which students see finance, so that it is not just good for companies, but also good for the world.
Corporations & Society: Sustainable Finance
This course explores the relationship between corporations and society, and the ways in which governments, corporations and civil society manage issues where the pursuit of private goals is deemed inconsistent with the public interest. Students examine issues in the context of the natural environment and the social environment and then explore how financial markets can help drive positive change.
This HBA course is taught by Diane-Laure Arjaliès.
Assessing the Broader Impact of Business
Organizations increasingly want to assess the impact of their business on the environment in which they operate. Doing so helps investors make informed decisions, improves organizational reputation, and provides a broad set of metrics to evaluate employees. Despite this growing interest and research support for the benefits to the firm, managers find it difficult to estimate the impact of their organization on its different stakeholders. This course provides students with methods and tools to conduct such assessment–both in the for-profit and non-for-profit sector.
This HBA course is taught by Diane-Laure Arjaliès.
Building the Business of the 21st Century
This course sheds light on the reality and plausibility of putting the financial sector at the service of society. Finance is an industry which, not only due to its complexity but also due to its damaged reputation in the recent crisis can potentially provide real solutions to pressing social concerns.
The course is designed to encourage students to follow the money through the investment chain. Students explore how the flow of capital travels from the savers to the corporations in which the money is ultimately invested. Throughout, students reflect on the potential flaws in the system and how to address them.
This MBA course is taught by Diane-Laure Arjaliès.
This course will be taught from three different yet interrelated disciplinary perspectives - Accounting, Finance and Strategy. The Accounting module describes the rise of the modern corporation, and the key shifts from corporate governance to responsible governance, in recent years. This enables a discussion of the regulatory and best practice frameworks that enable corporate actors to govern responsibly. The remainder of the Accounting module focuses on investor demands for the integration of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metrics in executive compensation. Students are encouraged to be critical of the efficacy, measurement and completeness of metrics used in directing executives’ attention to financial, environmental and social goals.
This MBA course is co-taught by Nadine de Gannes.
Ideas Worth Teaching Award
Assessing the Broader Impact of Business has received the Aspen Ideas Worth Teaching Award, which recognizes courses that prepare future business leaders to tackle society’s largest challenges and create a more inclusive version of capitalism.
Community Engaged Learning Award
Diane-Laure Arjaliès wins a 2019 Community Engaged Learning award for her course, Assessing the Broader Impact of Business. Arjaliès won the Page Prize last year for this same course.
Interested in sustainability accounting?
Check out the CPA-Ivey Centre for Accounting & the Public Interest. The Centre promotes accounting research and teaching at the Ivey Business School, supporting the accounting faculty and providing a new forum for innovative thinking and thought leadership concerning public interest issues. The Centre fosters the development of breakthrough research and contributes to the leading accounting and management journals of today.