Workshop on Sustainable Finance

Using Systems Thinking for Sustainable Issuance & Investment


Sustainable Investment is rapidly becoming part of mainstream investment strategy, driven by the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the demands of millennial investors.  Whilst it is clear that this development will create major opportunities, there are key constraints stalling market development. These include unclear definitions, inconsistent approaches to ESG, and the difficulty of portfolio assessment and monitoring. Moreover, existing data, regulatory frameworks and reporting systems no longer suit their purpose. This is holding back both supply and demand for sustainable finance product.  To move forward we need to improve our understanding and definitions as they guide us towards the creation of practical analytical frameworks.


In this workshop we want to facilitate dynamic thinking in order to improve our understanding of:

  • How to design and use sustainable investment frameworks to create trust and transparency with all stakeholders
  • How to finance resilience and sustainable development
  • How to balance the trade-off between financial and sustainable investment returns 

We have designed this senior executive level workshop series to help answer these questions and explore how new cutting edge research can be used to help to redefine and transform the scale and scope of the sustainable investment market place.

Cambridge University is bringing together a selected group of leading industry experts, drawn from major issuers, investors, bankers, lawyers, academics and other third parties with the key aim of investigating how market practitioners can systemise sustainable finance. We will look at how issuers, investors and other stakeholders can use systems methodology to help build a better understanding of the core drivers and potential application of sustainable investment decision making.


In summary, this workshop has been designed to achieve the following goals: 

  • Practical exposure to systems thinking methodologies to understand how this approach can be used to improve sustainable investment performance
  • An immersive learning experience to identify gaps and opportunities to transform investment identification, evaluation and decision making techniques 
  • In depth collaboration with key stakeholders in designing better definition for sustainable investment that is aligned with respective stakeholders’ business models and yet collaborative


This event is by invitation only. For further information or to register an interest in joining the workshop please contact






Thursday 27 September - Pre-workshop Dinner

There will be a pre-workshop dinner from 19:00 on Thursday 27 September in the Old Combination Room at Christ's College, Cambridge. The College is located in the centre of the historical city, as marked on the map online here.


Friday 28 September - Workshop





 Keynote Speaker: David Pitt-Watson


 Coffee Refresh


 Session 1: How to make and recognise a sustainable enterprise?
 Led by Cambridge academics




 Session 2: How might regulations and legislation be improved to support the sustainable   investment market? Led by Clifford Chance


 Session 3: How are Capital Markets supporting sustainable finance?
 Led by Citi


 Coffee Break


 Session 4: How to improve sustainable investment decisions and communication?


 Coffee Refresh


 Wrap-up Session


 Networking reception followed by close





Registration and contact:

This event is by invitation only. For further information or to register an interest in joining the workshop please contact



The workshop is located at in the James Dyson Building at the University of Cambridge's Engineering Department.


Regular trains to Cambridge run from both London King's Cross and London Liverpool Street. Cambridge is easily accessed via the M11 although parking is very limited at the Engineering Department. The closest public car parks are located at the Grand Arcade Shopping Centre or at Queen Anne Terrace on Gonville Place.



There are many hotels based in central Cambridge, details of which can be found online here. It is also possible to book College accommodation out of term time - availability can be found online here. If you would like any advice about booking your accommodation, please contact





This workshop is organised by the Resilience and Sustainable Development Programme (RSDP) in collaboration with, and supported by:



To contact the RSDP team directly, please email  







For further information please contact:

Lisa Barnett

T: +44 (0)1223 748267