EBI Publications

the criteria list is enlarged to include the innovation and the impact of the entity, the creation of a reliable best practice as well as the role of the team. For the year 2013, the Awards were established as the world’s leading awards for environmentally and socially responsible banking and investment. They attracted a record 254 entries from 164 financial institutions and 57 non-financial groups in 62 countries. These entries included institutions from developing as well as developed countries, for example: Brazil, Spain, South Africa, Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, United States of America, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Kenya, China and others. Some of their strategies are as follows: 1. Reducing the environmental footprint. 2. Promoting staff diversity. 3. Developing sustainability criteria in procurement policies for the Suppliers. 4. Focusing on micro, small and medium-sized businesses. 5. Emphasizing social and financial inclusion and educational programs. 6. Supporting loans to develop eco- friendly products and innovation in sustainability. 7. Enhancing the role of women. 8. Promoting social and economic development through higher education. Conclusion: “Sustainable Banking is using money with conscious thought about its environmental, cultural and social impacts, and with the support of savers and investors who want to make a difference, by meeting the present day needs without compromising those of future generations.” (Triodos Bank) In recent years, banks around the world started to take steps toward more sustainable practices by changing policies as well as the culture within because they represent both a demand for greater social and environmental responsibility in addition to a new landscape of business opportunity. While it may seem like a choice open to banks to either follow or ignore, the trends in the financial world and the expectations within society distinctly point toward an obligation to take up this challenge.