Sustainable Finance: a New Theoretical Paradigm

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2021-65-9-5-13
Yu. Danilov (, 
Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), 82, Prosp. Vernadskogo, Moscow, 119571, Russian Federation

Received 26.03.2021.

Acknowledgements. The paper was written with the support of budget financing for fundamental research at RANEPA. 

Abstract. The article provides a brief overview of the concepts that substantiate the feasibility of moving from the classical paradigm of finance to a new paradigm of sustainable finance. In the modern world, there is a sharp increase in the number of works on the problems of sustainable finance. At the same time, the number of theoretical works in this area is insignificant, and they are underrepresented in leading scientific journals. The concept of sustainable finance has several key elements, including a new interpretation of the value of corporations and securities (which takes into account environmental and social externalities), long-term value creation as the main corporate goal, the adaptive markets hypothesis. All these elements are based on the initial thesis about the need to combine financial and non-financial (social and environmental) goals in the development of corporations, which is followed by an increasing number of investors. Accordingly, supporters of the concept propose a revolutionary transition to a new paradigm, trying to refute such fundamental concepts of the traditional paradigm of finance as the efficient markets hypothesis and the capital asset pricing model. A natural continuation of attempts to refute these concepts are practical recommendations of sustainable finance for financial organizations, suggesting a change in the approach to diversification, preference for passive investment, a reduction in the investment chain, etc. A certain justification for such claims is given by a sharp increase in the share of responsible investors (investors who share the ESG principles) in the total volume of investments under professional management. In addition, special attention to sustainable finance is predetermined by the growing importance of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, one of the instruments for the implementation of which is sustainable finance.

Keywords: sustainable finance, sustainable development, ESG principles, responsible investment, impact investment, long-term value (LTV), stakeholder model, adaptive markets, green and social bonds


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For citation:
Danilov Y. Sustainable Finance: a New Theoretical Paradigm. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2021, vol. 65, no. 9, pp. 5-13.

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