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University of Exeter Business School

Sustainable Finance

Module titleSustainable Finance
Module codeMBAM934B
Academic year2023/4
Module staff
Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks

5 days

Number students taking module (anticipated)


Module description

This module will provide you with an understanding of the strategic implications of sustainability challenges on financial systems, including capital management in private sector businesses and public sector policy formation. It will explore strategies and frameworks for responding to risks and opportunities posed by sustainability issues, like asset valuation, carbon pricing, climate risks and impact investing. Enhanced core competencies for decision making including managing complexity, systems and long-term thinking, and implementing collaborative approaches.

Module aims - intentions of the module

In this module we will do a deep dive into sustainable finance. Both sustainability and finance are very broad subjects, so we will need to narrow down the topics. During the one-week masterclass, we will focus on climate warming. More in particular, on the effect of climate warming on the value of corporations, and on the role of the financial service industry on the mitigation and adaptation to climate warming.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. critically appraise contemporary issues and trends in sustainable finance and the implications of sustainability for financial tools and techniques and investment opportunities;
  • 2. define and explain how ESG factors can be incorporated in investment decisions;
  • 3. identify the challenges of implementing new financial initiatives, such as carbon pricing;
  • 4. apply risk management tools to sustainability.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. apply appropriate theoretical principles to analyse complex financial problems or alternatives;
  • 6. critically evaluate emerging financial tools and instruments.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 7. present and defend strategic analyses in multiple forms (written, verbal, digital) based on case material, desk based and empirical research;
  • 8. give and receive feedback at all levels, building confidence and developing trust that enables Self and others to take more assertive actions;
  • 9. work effectively in multi-cultural groups to research, explore and prepare a persuasive and carefully considered argument against an assignment or client brief;
  • 10. improve personal effectiveness through consciously and diligently developing own communication skills.

Syllabus plan

The module consists of 5 consecutive days (Monday to Friday) divided in morning and afternoon sessions. The cornerstone of the module is your mini-assignments and the final presentation.

The morning sessions are devoted to interactive learning where traditional lecturing is reduced to a minimum. At the end of every session, you will receive several guiding questions (based on the learning outcomes of the morning session) for you to work on in the afternoon.

Indeed, during the afternoon sessions you will work (in groups) on the mini-assignments based on the guiding questions. You will be coached by the Professor. The mini-assignments are submitted by 18:00 and you obtain feedback before class next day. On Friday afternoon, you will present a summary of your main findings and conclusions over the week.

A key component of your learning is that you connect the dots as the week goes. Connecting the dots will prove useful not only for your presentation on Friday but also, and most importantly, for your learning.

The topics covered:

  • the taxonomy of sustainable finance and sustainable asset valuation
  • the role of financial institutions in sustainability
  • the role of financial markets in sustainability – the case of carbon pricing
  • sustainable risk management – the case of climate risk
  • impact investing and ESG reporting.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activity31Lectures (5 hrs x 5 days) = 25
Guided Independent Study115Reading, Research, Writing
Assessment for learning exercises 4Lecturer feedback on written assignments and discussions

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
In class discussions5 hour1-5, 8, 9Peer feedback

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Short written case analysis – in groups504 x daily assignments each of 1000 words 1-6Written feedback on every assignment the morning after
Individual presentations and Q&A5015 minutes per person7-10Oral & written feedback after the presentation

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Short written case analysis (50%)4 x Individual Assignments of 1, 000 words (50%)1-66 weeks after briefing
Individual presentation and Q&A (50%)Individual presentation delivered over Zoom (15 minutes, 50%)7-106 weeks after briefing

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Schoenmarker, D. and Schramade, W. (2019). Principles of Sustainable Finance. Oxford University Press.


Resources will include an array of online and research materials, including a mix of existing theoretical

and practitioner frameworks currently in use, reports from financial and reporting corporations, and press articles

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources


Key words search

Finance, Risk and Return

Credit value15
Module ECTS


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date