9 August 2019
The Department of Economics and the SOAS Centre for Sustainable Finance
successfully convened the first SOAS Summer School on “Sustainable Finance and
Climate Change”. The summer school was attended by 22 university students and
finance professionals from Europe, Africa, Asia and North America, all of whom
shared a keen interest in learning more about a cutting-edge area of finance that has
become a key topic for financial institutions and financial authorities around the
Taught jointly by Dr Harald Heubaum (Deputy Director of the SOAS Centre for
Sustainable Finance), Felicia Jackson (Chief Executive of SUFINDA C.I.C.), Dr
Jakob Thomä (Managing Director at 2° Investing Initiative) and Dr Ulrich Volz
(Director of the SOAS Centre for Sustainable Finance), the summer course
introduced students to the role of finance in the transition to a sustainable, low-
The course covered a broad range of topics that enable students to understand and
apply key concepts in climate and sustainable finance, including the role of climate
and other environmental risks in creating potential financial risks in banking and
capital markets, and the role of financial actors in driving a global transition and
aligning capital markets with climate and sustainability goals. Visiting lectures by
were delivered by Prashant Vaze (Head of Policy and Government at the Climate
Bonds Initiative), Nick Silver (Managing Director of Callund Consulting Limited) and
Naasir Roomanay (ESG Analyst at Investec Asset Management).
The summer school also comprised excursions to the City of London, with visits to
the Bank of England and Aviva Investors. At the Bank of England, students learned
about the Prudential Regulation Authority’s approach to addressing climate risk in
the financial system and the Bank’s work as a founding member of the Network of
Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System. At Aviva
Investors, students got an insight into the efforts of a large asset management
company to integrate climate and sustainability risk in its operations and implement
the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.
The summer school concluded with an exchange with various London-based NGOs
– including the Carbon Tracker Initiative, the European Climate Foundation,
CarbonBrief, the Climate Bonds Initiative, ShareAction, and the 2° Investing Initiative
– on the main challenges in aligning the financial system with sustainability.
Further information on the 2019 Summer School on Sustainable Finance and Climate Change can be found on the programme page.