Sustainability and sustainable development are relevant issues of the current debate on the future of the planet. Sustainability is a multidimensional concept and includes not only environmental issues but also social, economic and institutional issues. Private strategies and policy orientations towards sustainability imply taking into account explicitly risk emerging from economic choices of consumption and investment. The role of financial instruments supporting sustainability has been widely recognized in the economics and financial literature and in the on field experience, since risk and future are two components of most of financial contracts. Nowadays the new challenges on sustainability are emerging from an increasing push coming from the demand side. Consumers are increasingly interested in demanding goods and service (including financial services) compliant with the sustainability issues. Moreover, also investors in the financial markets are increasingly looking for sustainable and responsible investment but also clients are increasingly demanding financial products that allows one to contribute to reduce risk of an uncertain future. Additionally, policies are increasingly focused on sustainability policies due to a variety of reasons: the need to change the paradigm of production in the current models of development and the increasing interest coming from people, recently also young generations. The paper starts from the concepts of sustainability and sustainable development depicting the relationship between sustainability and financial markets. A regulatory framework is provided at worldwide level, focusing on the recent Action plan of the European Union for a sustainable development. The analysis is finally implemented looking at the financial products that are emerging from the on-field experience of financial firms. Responsible and sustainable investment, financial inclusion and microcredit, support to environmental friendly investment projects and risk assessment for any investment project are the most relevant areas of financial products or practices implemented. There financial institutions that are organizing their activities on the basis of an ethical, responsible and sustainable approach and the results are positive. Most of the experiences surveyed are moving from an approach CSR-oriented to a revision of the business models, adopting practices and products (retail and corporate) oriented towards sustainable development. Nevertheless, even if the attention of regulation and the market is dramatically increasing, the process of change among the financial institutions seems to be still too slow and too cautious.
|Translated title of the contribution||[Autom. eng. transl.] Finance for sustainable development: an analysis of the state of the art|
|Number of pages||43|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|
- SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
- SVILUPPO SOSTENIBILE