The concepts of responsibility and sustainability are inherent parts of the public discourse, and are gaining great attention in the economy, in academic research and society. In the financial sector a number of sustainability initiatives have been launched in the last 10 to 15 years. Investment banks and multilateral development banks (MDBs) adopted comprehensive environmental, social and governance policies and standards. The aim was to set common rules for financial projects and activities in order to create a level playing field. These policies and standards have contributed to the formation of global, quasi-legal requirements with regard to environmental, social and governance issues, which are often referred to as global administrative law now. The new generation of investors and entrepreneurs, however, has to put the environmental and social impacts of their economic activities centre-stage.
Sustainable entrepreneurship and responsible investment and banking meets at the confluence of three constituent components – environmental sustainability, economic sustainability and socio-political sustainability. The product portfolio and the toolbox of investment and banking are expanded by these new way of thinking, however with a new mindset and its effects on a company’s “DNA” and corporate culture.