Stockholm (NordSIP) – Ever since the Sustainable Finance Lab managed to secure its funding (courtesy of Vinnova), the associated researchers have been eager to start working on and spreading their ideas. Some projects have quietly kicked off, others are waiting in the pipeline. Last Friday, June 11th, it was finally time for a grand opening, attended, among others, by Åsa Lindhagen, Sweden’s Minister for Financial Markets and Deputy Minister for Finance.
Sustainable Finance Lab´s stated ambition is “to foster real change and progress in terms of how financial markets – in Sweden and beyond – engage with and facilitate social and environmental sustainability.”
The initiative is a consortium, comprised of KTH (the Royal Institute of Technology), IVL (the Swedish Environmental Research Institute), Luleå University of Technology, the Stockholm Resilience Centre, Luleå University of Technology, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the University of Gothenburg, and Lin Lerpold from the Stockholm School of Economics Institute for Research.
According to the opening statement by the leading researchers, this innovative transdisciplinary knowledge centre aims to develop “an ecosystem of both incumbent and non-traditional actors to facilitate development of innovative and sustainable, yet commercially viable, business ideas and financial practices which align with broader societal sustainability goals.”
The scientists behind the new sustainability initiative have identified four major issues to focus on. These range from developing better standards for non-financial disclosures and more sophisticated risk-assessment models to understanding the inherent conflict of interests at the intersection between economy, environment and society and improving the sustainability decision-making process.
In their opening remarks, the leading scientists point out the importance of working in an inclusive and transdisciplinary way. “There is a lot to be done to ensure that financial markets strengthen rather than undermine social and environmental sustainability,” they conclude (in Swedish).