For the first time in Switzerland, a book puts the spotlight on sustainable finance and its innovations. While academic and statistical research has looked into the topic, no book to date had focused on this industry’s entrepreneurial and innovative potential, particularly in the Geneva area.
Celebrating financial innovation
On the occasion of its fifth anniversary, Sustainable Finance Geneva wished to showcase the work of financial pioneers and present ten emblematic innovations that demonstrate our region’s creativity in this field. Looking back to the origins of the sustainable finance movement, often in the words of the pioneers themselves, and examining the developments in the market and its future prospects, the book provides points of reference for our Geneva’s potential in sustainable finance. Convinced that “innovation feeds innovation”, SFG hopes this publication will inspire new entrepreneurial initiatives in this line of business.
A unique ecosystem
The Lake Geneva region presents a unique ecosystem that makes this region a sustainable financial laboratory unique in the world. It has acted as a testing ground for many of these major innovations, which have often gone on to spread worldwide.
Although these initiatives are not all "world firsts", they share a common factor in that they have benefited from Geneva's unique ecosystem, which brings together a leading financial center and a network of international organizations. In addition, Geneva shares Switzerland's spirit of innovation, which has been recognized in global rankings.
What are the ten innovations?
This book does not aim to provide an exhaustive list. These ten innovations, initiated or developed in the Geneva area, are emblematic of how this laboratory of sustainable finance operates.
You will discover in this book…
1. How to engage shareholders to boost sustainability in companies
2. The birth of Europe's first leading extra-financial ratings agency
3. The potential of monitoring corporate reputation in real time
4. Geneva banks’ pioneering sustainable investment funds
5. The launch of the world's first microfinance investment fund
6. Innovative strategies for obtaining and measuring the impact of investments
7. The worldwide success of UN initiatives for greater sustainability in the international financial system
8. New finance mechanisms for healthcare
9. Philanthropy advices for improved outcomes
10. Why Geneva can play a central role in fostering transparency in trade finance
Sustainable finance as seen by…
The publication of this book was only possible thanks to the support of SFG’s members and partners and to the many innovators who are interviewed and quoted in it. (The following quotes are taken from the book).
“In this book, Sustainable Finance Geneva aims to build awareness of the unsung strengths of Geneva in the field of sustainable finance by sharing success stories, in line with the Council of State’s goal of positioning our canton as a laboratory for this rapidly growing sector.”
SERGE DAL BUSCO - State Councilor, Department of Finance
PIERRE MAUDET - State Councilor, Department of Security and Economy
“The pursuit of short-term profit has obscured the fact that money is not an end in itself, but a tool — and one of vital importance to the economy. Today, we are facing the consequences of this mindset. Ever-tighter regulation, to the point of being excessive, is making access to credit increasingly difficult. Financial innovation, which historically has been linked to economic growth, is diminished.
Fortunately, there are initiatives that aim to do things differently: those of sustainable finance.”
NICOLAS PICTET – President of Geneva Financial Center Foundation
“Sustainable finance has expanded at a fantastic pace in Switzerland over the past decade. It is essential to capitalize on this momentum and on Geneva’s ecosystem to continue to foster synergies and innovations
in this field. It is also crucial that umbrella associations, politicians and the financial sector work together to ensure the prestige and influence of sustainable Swiss finance, which we believe is an opportunity for the
competitiveness of Switzerland as a financial center.”
BERTRAND GACON – President of SFG