Special issue: Social, Environment, and Rating Agencies Help to Integrate Sustainability Principles
SMART researchers María Ángeles Fernández-Izquierdo and Elena Escrig-Olmedo are co-editing a special issue of open access journal Sustainability on how 'Social, Environment, and Rating Agencies Help to Integrate Sustainability Principles'.
Following the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the launch of the ‘EU Action Plan for Financing Sustainable Growth’ in 2018, the global community has a new agenda and framework on how to face the most urgent global problems challenging the world. In this context, the participation of the financial system is crucial to achieving sustainable development.
The integration of Sustainability Principles into a financial system could bridge the gap between policies and fundamental objectives such as growth, the social development, and access to economic opportunities.
Sustainable Finance, and specially environmental, social, and governance (ESG) rating agencies and sustainability indices—acting as relevant financial market actors—should take a stand on working towards achieving a more sustainable development, though the integration of Sustainability Principles into their assessment processes and their contribution to more sustainable business models.
ESG rating agencies scrutinize businesses and assess ESG performance in a holistic perspective. However, they use different methods and criteria to measure the same construct, and this could imply a lack of consensus in terms of definition, measurement and, consequently, management of sustainability performance.
This Special Issue will comprise a selection of papers addressing, among others, concerns linked to: (1) A sustainable financial market: The evolution of ESG rating agency industry; (2) challenges and opportunities to ESG rating agencies and sustainability indices in a sustainability context; (3) solutions that help in the integration of Sustainability Principles into ESG performance assessment methodologies adopted by rating agencies; (4) rating agencies and their evaluations of ESG performance along supply chains; (5) the role of credit rating agencies and stock exchanges in the measurement of long-term global sustainability risks, etc.