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European University Institute - Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies

Conference discusses banking sector’s challenges and sustainability transition

Organised in cooperation with Banca d'Italia, the Florence School of Banking and Finance Annual Conference took place on 23 and 24 March and focused on how the financial sector can ease the transition to a sustainable economy.

31 March 2023 | Event

FBF Annual Conference Banking Sectors Challenges in its Transition to Sustainability

During the sessions, it was emphasised that financial institutions' management of climate-related risks and compliance with transparency and disclosure requirements can be hampered by a lack of access to quality data.

Some of the discussions focused on the challenges that the diversity of existent Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) reporting standards, ratings and indicators bring to supervisors, regulators and supervised institutions.

In particular, during his keynote speech, Ben Caldecott (Global Research Alliance for Sustainable Finance and Investment (GRASFI), stressed the need of a new ESG paradigm that adequately addresses the need for a ‘just transition’ and contemplates not only the net zero goal, but also other sustainability objectives, including social and governance accountability aspects.

“The paradigm shift should seek to truly transform the role of finance towards sustainability and go beyond merely ESG scores, disclosure, and risk measurement practices” said Caldecott, emphasising also the relevance of transition plans.

Another important message that came out from the two-day discussions is that policy-makers should reserve a more relevant place to the scientific knowledge behind climate change. The role of the EUI and academia more generally is key to bridge policy discussions and analytical data. It was also mentioned how the current geopolitical context, with the current invasion of Ukraine by Russia, has a deep impact on the energy sector and ultimately also on the climate challenge.

This event gathered representatives from academia, from the private sector and from European Institutions. It marked an important collaboration between the Florence School of Banking and Finance with the Bank of Italy, a successful experience that will be repeated in the upcoming years.

Last update: 31 March 2023

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