AE512021 - Sustainable Finance


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Group Presentation
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Group Presentation 100/100 15 minutes

Course content

This course focuses on the relationship between sustainability and finance. Traditionally, finance has exclusive focused on maximizing profit and shareholder value, and non-financial issues were largely dismissed as being outside of fiduciary duty. This view, developed in the age of resource abundance, is becoming quickly outdated. Sustainable finance, which considers financial concerns alongside environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues, recognizes that the planet-wide challenges, such as climate change, nature loss, and persistent social and income inequality, are vital for understanding financial risks and opportunities and allocating funding to its most productive use. Furthermore, finance has an important role to play in the transition toward a sustainable and inclusive economy.

In this course, students will be introduced to sustainable finance. They will learn about the relationship between finance and the UN Sustainable Development Goals and how finance interacts with economic, social and environmental issues (ESG). The course covers how sustainable finance relates to mainstream financial models; key actors, concepts, and theories; value, impact, and values-based investing. The course will delve into critical recent developments in sustainable finance, including principles, standards and frameworks, global policy and business initiatives, partnerships and alliances, regulation, and key debates. The course will also cover ESG integration, ESG data and reporting, and active ownership.

The course will consist of regular lectures and visiting guest lectures by top ESG practitioners and researchers with an emphasis on active student engagement and discussion.

Learning outcome

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  • Describe how finance and sustainable development (including SDGs) intersect
  • Explain key concepts, models, theories, and instruments in sustainable finance
  • Analyze how economic, social and environmental issues (ESG) interact with finance
  • Evaluate how sustainable investing differs from impact and values-based investing
  • Appraise critical recent developments and key debates in sustainable finance
  • Describe ESG integration and ESG instruments and tools
  • Explain challenges pertaining to ESG disclosure, reporting, and data
  • Appraise active ownership tools and practices
  • Evaluate transition challenges to low-carbon and circular economy
  • Analyze, debate, and present course material orally and in writing (English)

Learning methods and activities

  • Lectures with a strong focus on student engagement
  • Visiting guest lectures by top ESG professionals and researchers
  • Harvard Business School cases
  • Small group work, including discussions and group projects
  • Presentations

Compulsory assignments

  • Obligatory Assignment

Further on evaluation


Mandatory attendance of guest lectures and HBS case presentations. All required readings should be completed before the actual lecture. Final details will be announced at the beginning of the course.

Obligatory Assignments

There will be up to six obligatory assessments during the course (including HBS cases). The majority of the assessments will be part of a semester-long group project. The assessments are graded as pass/fail. All obligatory assessments must be passed in order to qualify for the final exam, which will be a presentation of the semester-long group project. Instructor feedback will be provided on obligatory assessments, and students will have an opportunity to redo and resubmit failed assessments before the final exam.

Final Exam

Final exam is a group presentation of the semester-long project at the end of the semester. It accounts for 100% of the total grade and is graded on an A-F basis. Students will need to pass the obligatory assignments to take the final exam. Final details will be announced at the beginning of the course. Students who failed the final exam could retake it at the end of the following semester if they passed the obligatory assignment. Students who failed both the obligatory assignment and the final exam have to retake the entire course. The retake exam will not be an oral (group) presentation and will take the form of a 72 hr take home exam.

Specific conditions

Admission to a programme of study is required:
International Business and Marketing (860MIB)

Course materials

Course materials will be available by the beginning of the course.

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2023

Language of instruction: English

Location: Ålesund

Subject area(s)
  • Economics and Administration
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of International Business


Examination arrangement: Group Presentation

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD Group Presentation 100/100
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring UTS Group Presentation 100/100
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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