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Finance & Sustainability

Spring 2008 MBA Course

B9301-001: Finance & Sustainability

M - A Term, 09:00AM to 12:15PM
Location: URI 142

Instructor: Bruce Usher

The primary objective of financial professionals is to provide a valuable service — whether it is investment banking, capital markets, commercial banking or asset management that earns a profit for the practitioner. Fortunately, the same financial services that generate a profit can simultaneously be used to create sustainable value for society. In recent years, for-profit financial services have been used to improve the environment, reduce poverty, advance developing countries, improve corporate governance and develop social entrepreneurs. The core financial skills that are necessary to create a sustainable world are identical to the financial skills required to earn a profit in more traditional financial services, but the application of those skills is a new and challenging opportunity. This course will explore the theories and the practical applications which financial professionals can leverage to simultaneously earn a profit and have a positive impact on society. The specific areas we will examine are capital markets (to address environmental issues including air pollution, climate change and renewable energy), banking (to reduce poverty), project finance (to reduce poverty and create infrastructure development) and investment management (to improve corporate governance in public companies and to develop socially responsible entrepreneurs).