About the project
The Sustainable Finance Research Platform is a joint project between five German research institutions that is funded by Stiftung Mercator.
With their independent research, the project partners aim to support stakeholders in politics, the financial sector, and the real economy in understanding and shaping the central role of capital markets in achieving a net-zero economy. The researchers involved answer social, political, and business-related questions, provide established and new research findings, and participate in political and public debate. They also want to establish sustainable finance as a topic in the German research landscape and secure connections with international institutes and processes.
The research of the Chair of Finance and Banking at the University of Augsburg focuses on the areas of climate finance, investment funds, financial engineering, and capital market-oriented risk management. The research strength in the area of sustainable finance results from the transfer of extensive methodological competence from classical finance disciplines on the one hand and from comprehensive knowledge in dealing with the most important sustainability databases worldwide on the other[BR1] .
[BR1]A second hand is not needed and imo it sounds better without a second hand.
The Climate Policy Department at the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) focuses on the question of how the energy, industrial, and building sectors can achieve climate neutrality. In addition to publications in leading international journals, the department initiated the joint projects “Climate Friendly Materials Platform” and “Future Power Markets Platform.” It also advises the German federal government and the EU Commission and organizes the BMBF “Dialogue on Climate Economics” on the topic of finance together with PIK Potsdam.
As part of the Frankfurt School, the FS-UNEP Collaborating Centre for Climate and Sustainable Energy Finance is a think-and-do-tank that implements projects in the field of sustainable investment on a global scale. It focuses on the role of finance in the transformation of the real economy. Among other things, the team is studying the impact of climate change on corporate financing conditions. The “Finance Fit for Paris Tracker” assesses the compatibility of financial market regulation with their transformation goals for different countries. These results will also be used to create a toolbox for policy design in countries of the global south.
The Research Group on Sustainable Finance (RGSF) at the University of Hamburg focuses on the areas of finance, accounting, and strategy. The aim is to investigate and push the role of financial markets and investments for more sustainability in society and economy. Research focuses on sustainability reporting and transparency, performance and risk impact of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria, and impact measurement of sustainable assets and investments.
The team of the Chair of Sustainable Finance at the University of Kassel has been working exclusively on sustainability issues in the financial sector for several years. They focus on the behavior of retail investors dealing with sustainable assets as well as the question of how existing barriers to investment in sustainable assets can be successively removed. An important challenge is implementing new sustainable financial products as well as developing existing ones further.
External project partners
Climate & Company is one of Europe’s leading sustainable finance think tanks and supports the Sustainable Finance Research Platform by coordinating its EU Outreach. Founded in 2020 by Ingmar Juergens (also a founding member of the Research Platform) and David Rusnok, this private non-profit institute brings together leading senior sustainable finance expert economists from EU institutions, academia, and the banking and investment sectors. The experienced leadership team is supported by the knowledge, energy, vision, and commitment of a growing team of young economists and sustainable finance experts from prestigious universities.
The Sustainability Transformation Monitor (STM) is a collaboration between the Bertelsmann Stiftung, Stiftung Mercator, the Universities of Hamburg and Mannheim, and the Peer School for Sustainable Development. The STM aims to explore the sustainability transformation of the economy with a simultaneous view of the real and financial economy focusing on the drivers and barriers of transformation. It is a survey amongst leaders, sustainability managers and experts from the real and financial economy over a three-year period. The project is accompanied by the platform members Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen, Prof. Dr. Timo Busch, Prof. Dr. Kerstin Lopatta (all University of Hamburg), and Prof. Dr. Sebastian Utz (University of Augsburg), amongst others.
The Management Board decides on the Sustainable Finance Research Platform’s strategic direction. The monthly board meetings are presided over by the current chair and the project coordinator.
The Advisory Board serves as a point of contact for stakeholders in politics, civil society, and business. Regular exchange aims to ensure sector-specific, political, and social developments are reflected in the platform’s work. Furthermore, it should create impulses for planning the platform’s research agenda. Lastly, the Advisory Board members act as multipliers in this context by transferring research findings and ideas from the project into their work.
- Nicolette Behncke, PwC Germany
- Dr. Elga Bartsch, Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK)
- Stefan Haver, RAG-Stiftung
- Dr. André Horstkötter, thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG
- Matthias Kopp, WWF Germany
- Wiebke Merbeth, Deloitte Consulting GmbH
- Ronny Meyer, Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV)
- Sabine Nallinger, Stiftung KlimaWirtschaft
- Antje Schneeweiß, Arbeitskreis Kirchlicher Investoren (AKI)
- Georg Schürmann, Triodos Bank N.V.
- Dr. Eva Söbbeke, Deutsche Bundesbank
- Silke Stremlau, Sustainable Finance Advisory Committee of the German Federal Government
- Dr. Eva Wimmer, Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF)
The Sustainable Finance Research Platform is funded by Stiftung Mercator.
Stiftung Mercator is a private, independent foundation that acts on the basis of scientific expertise and practical project experience. Through its work, it strives for a society characterized by openness to the world, solidarity and equal opportunities. To achieve these objectives, it supports and develops projects that improve participation and cohesion in an increasingly diverse society. Stiftung Mercator wants to strengthen democracy and the rule of law in Europe, address the impact of digitization on democracy and society, and drive forward climate change mitigation. Stiftung Mercator pursues activities in Germany, Europe and worldwide. It has a particular affinity with the Ruhr area, the home of its founding family and of the foundation’s headquarters.