Green finance, bright future: The first Hub for Sustainability Integration Conference

Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Photo of panelists on stage

Merging sustainability with financial management

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The inaugural Hub for Sustainability Integration Conference, a partnership between the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) and the Faculty of Environment, took place on March 22, 2024, with a program featuring Barbara Zvan, President and Chief Executive Officer of University Pension Plan, the Honorable Catherine McKenna, former Minister of Environment and Climate Change, and experts from across industry and the University.

The Faculty of Environment was well represented, with speakers and panellists including Dr. Bruce Frayne, Dean of Environment; Michael Wood, Associate Dean of Work-Integrated Learning; Dr. Sarah Burch, Executive Director of the Waterloo Climate Institute (on sabbatical); Dr. Blair Feltmate, Head of the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation; and Jennifer Lynes, Co-Director of the Sustainability and Financial Management Program. Speakers highlighted challenges and opportunities at the intersection of climate change, sustainability, and business, underscoring the critical need for sustainability to be integrated into business and finance and for capacity- building through programs like the Bachelor of Sustainability and Financial Management (BSFM).

The BSFM, a collaboration between SAF and the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development, is the first program in Canada to have an equal emphasis on sustainability and financial management and to be taught by experts in each area. The program is in its third year, and the students are already demonstrating their leadership – this weekend, a team from the BSFM took first in the A4S (Accounting for Sustainability) International Case Competition held in Toronto. In a world where the environment and economic prosperity have often been seen to be at odds, we are envisioning one where – through collaboration across disciplines and sectors - they can be intertwined.

Read the full recap story about the inaugural Hub for Sustainability Integration Conference.

The University of Waterloo's Knowledge Integration (KI) program, celebrating its 15th anniversary, emphasizes solving complex global challenges like climate change and cybersecurity through interdisciplinary collaboration. The program aligns with Waterloo's future vision of integrating different disciplines to address global issues. At the 15th-anniversary event, projects from the Knowledge Integration exhibition (KIX), based on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, were showcased.