Sustainable Finance: Research and Policy Activities

Climate change is one of the megatrends that society is confronted with. In 2019, the European Union (EU) declared in the European Green Deal to transition to a sustainable economy until 2050, bringing up new challenges for the financial system. 

For financial markets, the consequences of climate change create new risks as well as a huge financing need to bear the costs of the transition toward a net-zero economy. At the same time, private investors’ interest in green and sustainable finance is rising. To make informed decisions from an economic and ecological perspective, it is important that information on environmental, social, and governance criteria (ESG) is available in a transparent and harmonized manner.

At SAFE, research looks into the impact on households, firms, and financial intermediaries and addresses issues like heterogenous ESG standards, regulatory loopholes, and greenwashing.

SAFE is part of the Frankfurt Panel on Sustainability Research and co-organized the First Sustainability Standards Watchers Conference in July 2022. Find out more about the conference.

Our researchers Loriana Pelizzon and Max Riedel presented their project “Green Auto Securitisation” at the kick-off-event for the research project “Sustainable Finance and Climate Protection”, supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Their project aims to develop a framework for a green financing mechanism to encourage the automotive industry, stakeholders, and consumers to support the financing of low-emission vehicles through bank loans.

The cooperative project “ClimLabels” by the Universities Bochum and Münster, the think tank Climate & Company, and SAFE was also featured at the conference. This project aims to improve the availability of climate-related information regarding investment decisions and is divided into four sub-projects, one being coordinated by Christine Laudenbach. More information on the projects here.


Join us for the Sustainability Standards Conference 2024 on 10 June from 9:00 to 17:30 CEST at Goethe University Frankfurt's Casino building with the theme A Global Baseline for Sustainability Reporting – Demand, Adoption, and Future Steps.

Register and participate in person or online


News & Activities


    Max Grossmann, Andreas Hackethal, Marten Laudi, Thomas PaulsConform to the Norm. Peer Information and Sustainable Investments
    SAFE Working Paper No. 412
    Household Finance SAFE Working Paper2023
    Carmelo LatinoSurfing the Green Wave: What’s in a “Green” Name Change?
    SAFE Working Paper No. 410
    Financial Markets SAFE Working Paper2023
    Carmelo Latino, Loriana Pelizzon, Max RiedelHow to Green the European Auto ABS Market? A Literature Survey
    SAFE Working Paper No. 391
    Financial Markets SAFE Working Paper2023
    Michele Costola, Katia VozianPricing Climate Transition Risk: Evidence from European Corporate CDS
    SAFE Working Paper No. 387
    Financial Markets SAFE Working Paper2023
    Raphael Abiry, Marien Ferdinandusse, Alexander Ludwig, Carolin NerlichClimate Change Mitigation: How Effective is Green Quantitative Easing?
    SAFE Working Paper No. 376
    Macro Finance SAFE Working Paper2022
    Roman Inderst, Marcus OppSocially Optimal Sustainability Standards with Non-Consequentialist ("Warm Glow") Investors
    SAFE Working Paper No. 346
    Financial Intermediation, Law and Finance, Household Finance SAFE Working Paper2022Sustainability; ESG; green financing; labelling;
    Kevin Bauer, Oliver Hinz, Johanna Jagow, Maximilian Speicher, Moritz von ZahnThe Smart Green Nudge: Reducing Product Returns through Enriched Digital Footprints & Causal Machine Learning
    SAFE Working Paper No. 363
    Financial Intermediation, Experiment Center SAFE Working Paper2022
    Monica Billio, Michele Costola, Iva Hristova, Carmelo Latino, Loriana PelizzonSustainable Finance: A journey toward ESG and climate risk
    SAFE Working Paper No. 349
    Financial Markets SAFE Working Paper2022Environmental, social, and governance factors (ESG); credit risk; debt cost; equity cost; sovereign bonds; portfolio management
    Alperen Afşin GözlügölThe Clash of ‘E’ and ‘S’ of ESG: Just Transition on the Path to Net Zero and the Implications for Sustainable Corporate Governance and Finance
    SAFE Working Paper No. 325
    Law and Finance SAFE Working Paper2021climate change, sustainability, ESG, employees, workforce, net zero transition, corporate governance, institutional investors, green finance
    Sebastian Steuer, Tobias TrögerThe Role of Disclosure in Green Finance
    SAFE Working Paper No. 320
    Law and Finance SAFE Working Paper2021
    Loriana Pelizzon, Aleksandra Rzeźnik, Kathleen Weiss HanleyInvestor Reliance on ESG Ratings and Stock Price Performance
    SAFE Working Paper No. 310
    Financial Markets SAFE Working Paper2021Corporate Social Responsibility, ESG Rating Agencies, Sustainable Invest- ments, Socially responsible investing, ESG, Portfolio choice
    Christoph Hambel, Holger KraftOptimal Carbon Abatement in a Stochastic Equilibrium Model with Climate Change
    SAFE Working Paper No. 92
    Macro Finance, Systemic Risk Lab SAFE Working Paper2015Climate change economics, Carbon abatement, GDP growth

    Finance Blog

      Ongoing Research Projects

      CategoryProjectResearcherProject DurationKeywordsProject IDPublication Count
      Law and Finance

      Sustainable Finance Law in Europe – Navigating between Regulation, Contractual Practice, Litigation, and Regulatory Competition (SaiLEur)

      Nikolai Badenhoop20241731041
      Financial Markets

      ESG Risk Management Framework for the Financial Sector (ESG UPTAKE)

      Alessandro Gastaldello, Carmelo Latino, Loriana Pelizzon, Pallavi Rajan, Katia Vozian20231
      Household Finance, Experiment Center

      Leading by Example – The Causal Effect of Credible Action by Local Government on Citizens’ Motivation and Beliefs about Others to Flight Climate Change

      Jakob Famulok, Michael Kosfeld, Christine Laudenbach20222324111
      Financial Markets

      Green Auto Securitization (GAS)

      Carmelo Latino, Loriana Pelizzon, Max Riedel, Yue Wang20221381081
      Household Finance

      Transition Labels in Climate Finance: Perception and Use by Private Investors

      Olga Balakina, Jakob Famulok, Christine Laudenbach20221481041
      Household Finance, Experiment Center

      Heterogeneity in Investor Preferences for Sustainable/Green Finance

      Jakob Famulok, Michael Kosfeld, Christine Laudenbach20221431061
      Law and Finance

      Private Companies: The Missing Link on The Path to Net Zero

      Alperen Afşin Gözlügöl, Wolf-Georg Ringe2021private companies, climate change, sustainability, climate risks, brown-spinning1
      Financial Markets

      ESG Factors and Climate Change for Credit Analysis and Rating

      Monica Billio, Nuno Cassola, Vittoria Cerasi, Michele Costola, Enrica De Cian, Iva Hristova, Carmelo Latino, Matteo Manera, Irene Monasterolo, Claudio Morana, Loriana Pelizzon20191381011

      Sustainable Finance: People