Global Footprint Network partner Bank Sarasin has been honored with the City of London’s Sustainable City Award for its innovative financial analysis using Ecological Footprint accounting as a credit risk factor in assessing government bonds.
The judges chose the Swiss banking firm as the overall winner for “research into how being green affects a nations’ growth prospects,” according to a press release issued by the prize committee. “This ‘green is good for the economy’ message is all the more powerful for having come from a bank rather than an NGO.”
In addition to being the overall winner, the bank also received the Farsight Award recognizing outstanding investment analysis that integrates long-term environmental, social & governance issues. It was honored “for innovative research into the sustainability of nations, predicting the likely consequences for their long-term economic performance – highlighting how economic growth can go hand in hand with sustainability,” according to the prize committee.
To determine the winner, judges evaluated 34 reports – covering topics such as microfinance, resource scarcity, carbon emissions trading and clean technologies – for originality, quality, sophistication, depth and financial usefulness. Sarasin beat out institutions including JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse with its report, “The World In a Dilemma between Prosperty and Resource Protection” written by Balacz Magyar.
“The judges found Bank Sarasin’s report to reflect ‘a very interesting but also extremely ambitious effort’ and felt it ‘sent an important message to economists of all governments about how growth cannot be decoupled from sustainability,’” the prize committee wrote.