Canada’s Concordia University in Montreal has launched a certification in sustainable investment modelled on the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.
The new Sustainable Investment Professional Certification (SIPC) is available at the David O’Brien Centre for Sustainable Enterprise at Concordia’s John Molson School of Business.
The self-study program, designed to meet the needs of professionals in finance, investment or other areas in business, comprises 70 to 80 hours of self-study curriculum material, online study guidance and certification testing. Topics covered include sustainability, governance, ethics, corporate social responsibility and environmental sustainability.
“The program meets a real need of tomorrow’s investors, providing the skills to assess investment risks and returns based on non-financial criteria,” said Roland Lescure, Chief Investment Officerat pension giant the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, which helped put the program together.
Other supporters include organisations such as the Desjardins Group and the Groupe Investissement Responsible (GIR).
Paul Shrivastava, the head of the O’Brien Centre, said the new qualification teaches “practical ways of incorporating sustainability, environmental, social and governance issues into investment decisions”.
“We believe it will be one of the answers towards education that is so needed in both the finance and business communities,” Milla Craig, President of the Finance and Sustainability Initiative, told Responsible Investor.
The new course follows the launch of the RI Academy, an online training course developed by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia, in 2008.