St. Gallen Carbon Workshop

The following has been prepared for an in-person workshop oikos Conference 2021, in St. Gallen, Switzerland (

Title: How do we finance a better future?

Date and Time: Thu, 21.10; 2-4.30 pm CEST.

Session Description: Join oikos International for a workshop on using the financial system to solve climate change's global challenges. We'll work together and discuss the available financial tools. The workshop will use the newly created oikos Sustainable Finance Toolkit and Career Map. This platform has been built to help students and researchers explore the exciting world of Sustainable Finance, ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance), and Impact Investing. Come learn how our financial system can be used for good


  1. Welcome and Introductions (5min)

  2. Presentation of the Toolkit (5mins)

  3. Carbon Markets and Group Discussion (10min)

  4. Breakout Groups - Challenges and Opportunities (20min)

  5. Integrated Capital Game (30min)

  6. Check-out (20min)



Please fill out this registration form. We'd love to stay in touch with you after the workshop.

Purpose of the Toolkit:

This toolkit is a platform to help you enter the field of sustainable finance by providing you with knowledge, skills, and access to the community.

You can join our Sustainable Finance Squad to help us to build this toolkit with resources, interviews, trainings, and more.

  • Share the research you are working on

  • Explore topics of interest

  • Network with the industry

What is Sustainable Finance?

Sustainable Finance describes a broad area within the world of finance. We can think of it along a spectrum of activity.

It can get quite complicated...

It is helpful to think of it in terms of Risk, Profit, AND Impact. Where Impact is the additional of ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance).

BNP Paribas has a quick article to explain all this further - Click Here. And you can use our toolkit for more information. Check out this page:

pageWhat is Sustainable Finance?

Methods to Implement Sustainable Finance

There are a lot of good blogs out there to help you. Here is one.

  • Exclusionary Screening

Avoid investing in companies in industries that are deemed as unethical e.g. tobacco, weapon, gambling. This strategy is sometimes referred to as Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) and is the oldest form of sustainable investing that first became popular in the 1980s

  • Best-in-Class Screening

Also referred to as positive screening, this strategy is based on selecting companies with better or improving ESG performance relative to their peers.

  • ESG Integration

Consider ESG risks and opportunities as part of the investment process alongside financial analysis. Some examples are adjusting a company’s financial forecast or cost of capital based on its ESG risks.

  • Thematic Investing

Invest in themes that are specifically related to sustainability such as clean energy, carbon transition, education, healthcare.

  • Active Engagement

Exercise ownership rights through direct engagement with companies. Some examples are voting in annual general meetings, meeting with company representatives, filing a shareholder resolution.

  • Impact investing

Investments are made with the intention to generate positive and measurable impact alongside a financial return.

There are many misconceptions that research is changing.

Carbon - A Key Piece to the Puzzle

Will finance really ever be sustainable unless we price in externalities?

  • Understanding carbon and other emissions is a key piece of knowledge future finance practitioners should have

  • Reporting and ESG frameworks are grappling with how to measure and price Scope 1, 2, and 3 Emissions

  • Analysis of carbon and the need for a price on carbon is going mainstream

Why do we need a price on carbon?

  • healthcare costs from pollution

  • heatwaves and droughts

  • damage to property from fires, flooding, and sea-level rise

  • a choice - move to greener technologies, or continue polluting and pay

  • capital markets will compare companies’ true cost of capital

"While no one would suggest we immediately stop driving, flying, or using steel, the sooner we admit these activities come with a cost, the better."

Steve Waygood, Aviva Investors, Chief Responsible Investment Officer

Time for an Activity

The Carbon Literacy Project is a very useful training and is from the University of Nottingham Trent. The project has identified the major outcomes that will happen given the impacts of climate change.

We need the world of finance to help with this future.

Will it be a Positive one? or a Trouble one?

  • What do you think are the most important issues to address?

  • How can finance be used to prevent or facilitate these issues?

Now Let's Role Play

Choose one of your most important issues and use the following game to discuss that issue.

pageIntegrated Capital Game

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