Sustainability must pay off for startups

June 2, 2021

Prof. Alexander Brem participated in a workshop on sustainability and its impact on finance and investments as part of the virtual NewHoRRIzon final conference held from 17 – 28th May 2021.

The track speakers of this conference came from industry, academics and non-profit organizations. The idea of the session is rooted in the trend of “impact investing”. Such deals aim to produce sustainable social and environmental impacts for investee enterprises as well as communities while still generating adequate financial returns. Here the question naturally arises how these two streams of funding responsible research and innovation (RRI) can be aligned to facilitate the development of enterprises that succeed in the market environment and sustainably bring about desired effects.    

This session aimed to explore the level of compatibility between the emerging socially responsible market investment strategy and the public funding represented, namely by Horizon 2020 & Europe. In this context, Prof. Brem highlighted that sustainability must pay off for startups: “If the investor does not care, and the customer does not care, so why should you care as a startup? An own motivation to act sustainably is important, but to change the whole landscape we need a different approach.” So only if the funders have own measures and procedures to integrate RRI, the startup world will move into a more sustainable one. Sustainability must pay off for startups, otherwise it will remain only a trend or marketing gag.

The full description of the session and a video recording is available here:

Source for pictures and part of this text:


This image shows Melanie Minderjahn

Melanie Minderjahn

M. A.

Research Associate, PR Manager

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