"The Future of the EU SDS - Expectations and Possible Contributions from the ESDN"

22 - 23 November 2012, Brussels, Belgium

The 8th ESDN Workshop took place in Brussels on 22-23 November 2012. The workshop was entitled "Financial Markets, Institutions and Policies in the Context of Sustainable Development - Dimensions, Issues and Actors of an Emerging Arena". In total, 53 participant from 14 European countries and Japan attended the workshop.

The workshop intended to scope the mechanisms and operational design of financial markets, explore the functional and dysfunctional aspects in a SD perspective and, on this basis, develop concrete fields of action for SD policy related to financing, financial markets and finance governance. The outcomes of the workshop provide an orientation for SD policy-makers in the debate around the financial markets and future policy options in their administrations. In addition, it brought together actors from different fields to discuss and learn from their respective experiences to develop suggestions how the financial markets could better serve SD objectives. The workshop focused on questions such as: What are the conceptual frames, the framework conditions, mechanisms and recent developments of financial markets? What exact impacts does the current financial market system have on SD policy and practice? How can financial market reforms and additional instruments and institutions be designed in order to enhance SD? How are sustainable investing practices affected by other events and upheavals in financial markets, such as the financial crisis or the current Euro crisis? To what extent do (or should) investors reflect on SD objectives in their investment decisions?

Keynote presentations
Welcome and Introduction

Introduction to the workshop: Financial markets and sustainable development – SD perspective, scope of the topic, and the major challenges

Jörg Mayer-Ries: BMU, Germany & André Martinuzzi: ESDN Office Coordinator, Austria

Session 1: Setting the stage - Different views on the international economic and financial markets and how they are connected to sustainable development

Double global sustainability: International macro-economic perspectives and long-term environmental modernization

Paul Welfens: Professor of European Economic Integration, University of Wuppertal/EIIW, Germany

Financial markets and SD: Clarification of concepts, major actors, current challenges and how the financial market is connected to SD

Richard Werner: Director of Centre for Banking, Finance and Sustainable Development, University of Southampton, UK

Banking governance, financial crisis and structural challenges – the micro-level perspectiveof sustainability

Volker Abel: Senior Manager, Department for Strategy & Finance in zeb/rolfes.schierenbeck.associates, Germany

Perspectives on double sustainability in Japan: Environmental aspects and long term economic dynamics

Akira Maeda: Professor, University of Tokyo, Japan

Session 2: European banking and business experiences

What could sustainable banking contribute towards a sustainable Europe?

James Vaccaro: Director, Investment Managementat Triodos Bank & Global Alliance for Banking on Values, UK

Indices, sustainability ratingsand the Dow Jones Sustainability Index

Guido Giese: Head of Indexes, SAM Group

The German Sustainability Code: Transparency and benchmarking of a company’s sustainability performance

Ralf Frank: Secretary General, Society of Investment Professionals (DFVA) in Germany

Session 3: European policy experiences

European policy experiences

UK: Financial markets, institutions and policies in the UK– a sustainability perspective

Chiara von Gunten: Branch Director, Z/Yen Group Limited, UK & Programme Manager of the London Accord

Germany: The German approach towards financial markets and its relation towards sustainable development

Dorothea Schäfer: Research Director Financial Markets, German Institute for Economic Research

Italy: From the financial crisis to the public debt crisis – some considerations on the Italian Case

Stefania Rossi: Professor of Macroeconomics, Departmentof Economics,University of Cagliari, Italy