Mapping existing approaches to promote social and environmental sustainability goals in the financial sector

This report provides an insight into the search for a financial system that is not only financially stable but one that serves the needs of societies and economies that develop in an equitable, inclusive and environmentally sustainable way. The goal of this report is to be a source of information for civil society and others with an interest in addressing sustainability in the financial sector in the most effective way. This report not only attempts to map what initiatives exist but also tries to identify the different approaches that are used on how to integrate social and environmental sustainability aspects in the banking and investment sectors. Each chapter in this report is therefore divided up according to the approaches or ‘strategies’, such as mandatory regulations, policy and incentives, voluntary measures, financial industry alternatives and citizens’ advocacy and campaigns. Given the many initiatives this report could not be complete nor provide an in-depth analysis, given the little information available about the actual impact of the initiatives. The report includes however a few critical comments on the practice and assumptions that underpin some initiatives, and offers an outline for further analysis, assessment and discussion about the many existing initiatives in the concluding remarks.

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