ELE 3914 Sustainable Finance

ELE 3914 Sustainable Finance

Course code: 
ELE 3914
Course coordinator: 
Kjell Jørgensen
Course name in Norwegian: 
Sustainable Finance
Product category: 
Bachelor - Programme Electives
2025 Spring
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Our society faces massive climatic- and environmental challenges - on a global scale. At the same time, we see recurrent violations of human rights and the practice of unethical business models. Standard finance and economic models ignore environmental and social concerns. Nature and its services are assumed freely available. However, the world’s current situation clearly demonstrate that ecological resources are limited.  Business, finance and economic models of the future must therefore incorporate social equity concerns and scarcity of environmental resources if they are to be useful tools to address sustainability issues.

How can companies internalize their impact on society? How can Corporate Governance accommodate this? How can long-term institutional owners contribute help companies reach their long-term sustainability goals? How will this affect companies’ choice of strategy and business models? How can integrated reporting facilitate the transparency of long-term goals, their status and progress?

These are some of the questions addressed in this course. In addition, you will learn how sustainability can be integrated in the different sectors of the financial industry such as the banking industry and the equity market and bond market.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

By completion of the course, you should:

  • Understand the scope of the climatic- and environmental challenges our society faces and how economics and finance play a central role in solving these.
  • Understand the different levels of sustainable finance – from sustainable finance 1.0 to sustainable finance 3.0.
  • Understand what are externalities, how these could be internalized and the regulatory authorities’ role in this.
  • Understand how Corporate Governance could facilitate the attainment of sustainability goals.
  • Understand how the formulation of sustainability goals affect the choice of strategy and business model.
  • Understand how ESG (ESG: Environmental, Social and Governance) could be integrated into the valuation of financial instruments like stocks and bonds.
  • Understand the barriers and incentives behind sustainable loans – loans to sustainable projects.
Learning outcomes - Skills

By completion of the course, you should be able to:

  • Address environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues in companies.
  • Identify externalities and possibilities for internalization.
  • Evaluate the Corporate Governance of companies and how this contribute in reaching sustainability goals.
  • Evaluate the degree of sustainability of companies’ strategies and business models.
  • Apply updated financial models to evaluate financial instruments like stocks, bonds and loans.
General Competence

Students should develop a critical sense to existing business practice and models. In addition, students should understand how finance could contribute to a more efficient transition to a sustainable society.

Course content
  1. The concept of sustainability – from the Brundtland commission to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Planetary Boundaries.
  2. The different aspects of sustainability:
    • Sustainable development,
    • Sustainable finance and
    • Sustainable business models.
  3. The different levels of sustainable finance – from sustainable finance 1.0 to sustainable finance 3.0.
  4. Externalities and internalization
  5. Corporate governance and sustainability
  6. The role of strategy and business models in the transition to sustainable business practices.
  7. Investing and Long-term Value creation (LTVC)
  8. ESG-integration into the valuation of stocks and bonds
  9. Banking and new assessments of lending
Teaching and learning activities

On campus lectures and digital learning components.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information

Please note that while attendance is not compulsory in all courses, it is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.


Higher Education Entrance Qualification


Deviations in teaching and exams may occur if external conditions or unforeseen events call for this.

Required prerequisite knowledge

An introductory course in finance.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Submission PDF
Exam/hand-in semester: 
First Semester
Group (2 - 3)
2 Week(s)
Written home assignment
Exam code: 
ELE 39142
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Exam category: 
School Exam
Form of assessment: 
Written School Exam - digital
Exam/hand-in semester: 
First Semester
Support materials: 
  • No support materials
3 Hour(s)
Written exam
Exam code: 
ELE 39143
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
All exams must be passed to get a grade in this course.
Total weight: 
Student workload
28 Hour(s)
Prepare for teaching
39 Hour(s)
Student's own work with learning resources
30 Hour(s)
Group work / Assignments
100 Hour(s)
3 Hour(s)
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 7,5 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of at least 200 hours.