We present below a selection of publications about sustainable investment, sustainability, and corporate social responsibility by thought leaders and experts on these issues. You will also find at the end of the section a series of academic papers based on Partners for Sustainability research and data.

Click on the images or the link to access the publishers’ pages.


Immense advances in the life sciences have deepened our understanding of the connection between nutrition and health, revealing that we can effectively improve our health and quality of life by redesigning our diet on a scientific basis. In Nutrition for a Better Life, one of the food industry’s leading experts takes a factual look into the past and future of food and nutrition. As former Nestlé CEO Peter Brabeck-Letmathe shows, while in the past forty years convenience was the selling point for many industrially produced foods, consumers have now come to demand specifically healthy products.

March 2017

There is nothing more powerful than a great idea at the right time. BlueOrchard is the story of such an idea: the vision to mobilize market forces to empower low-income households to create a better life.

BlueOrchard was founded 15 years ago, and as a private business initiative, it has grown into one of the world’s leading private impact investment companies. BlueOrchard has proven that it is possible to simultaneously achieve an attractive financial return and make a sustainable social impact. This book is the unique, colorful story of BlueOrchard, told by members of its board and management, by investors, partners, critical observers – and, most importantly, by the micro-entrepreneurs and recipients of loans themselves.

January 2017

To guide investors – both asset owners and investment managers – who are implementing ESG integration techniques in their investment process, this report is the most comprehensive description to date of what ESG-integrated analysis is, and how it works in practice.

September 2016

Fiduciary duty in the 21st century, the joint PRI, UNEP FI, UNEP Inquiry and UN Global Compact report, finds that fiduciary duty is not an obstacle to asset owner action on ESG factors. It looks at fiduciary duty across eight markets (US, Canada, UK, Germany, Brazil, Australia, Japan and South Africa) through a series of events, interviews, case studies and a legal review.

September 2015

Sustainable Investing is fast becoming an essential method of generating long-term returns, moving beyond the negative approaches to socially responsible investing that have dominated the field.  This book, our second on the subject, provides over 15 case studies of leading global investors and companies demonstrating how they successfully apply sustainability aspects to their core strategies.  Learn from prominent thought leaders Dan Esty and Paul Hawken among others who have contributed key chapters.  Our chapter on performance shows clearly how these strategies have been working once negative approaches are parsed out by those examining fund returns.  This book also examines in great depth what data exists, and what’s on the horizon, to best measure & capture sustainability successfully.  Regional perspectives, including 3 chapters on Asia, and focuses on Canada, Australia, Africa & India are also included, as is a look across asset classes.

Cary Krosinsky, Nick Robins, Stephen Viederman
ISBN: 978-0-470-88849-0
512 pages
January 2012

Eight years ago, the IRI took a first stab at what it would mean to implement responsible investment (RI) practices across a range of asset classes. Written for asset owners, money managers, consultants, and other investors looking for a way to invest responsibly across their portfolios, the Handbook on Responsible Investment Across Asset Classes aimed to shed light on asset classes that had received relatively less attention. For most of its history, responsible investment strategy had focused on public equities, and to a lesser extent, fixed income products, and the infrastructure to support social and environmental investment had developed accordingly. Less developed was the ecosystem for RI in asset classes like real estate, emerging markets, commodities, and cash, each of which carry unique risks and opportunities that appeal to different kinds of investors, and thus have different implications for a responsible investment strategy.

The Initiative for Responsible Investment at the Hauser Institute for Civil Society, Harvard Kennedy School, 2008

In early 2013, the Global Sustainable Investment Association (GSIA) released the Global Sustainable Investment Review 2012, the first report to collate the results from the market studies of regional sustainable investment forums for Europe, the United States, Canada, Asia, Japan, Australasia and Africa. In the period since the launch of the inaugural study, the global sustainable investment market has continued to grow both in absolute and relative terms, rising from $13.3 trillion at the outset of 2012 to $21.4 trillion at the start of 2014, and from 21.5 percent to 30.2 percent of the professionally managed assets in the regions covered.
Over this two-year period, the fastest growing region has been the United States, followed by Canada and Europe. These three regions are also the largest regions in terms of assets, accounting for 99 percent of global sustainable investing assets.

A new breed of investing that combines making more money and making a difference.
First there were the “Profiteers,” investors who sought to make money regardless of the cost to society. Then came the “Do-Gooders,” investors who avoided “bad” companies and supported “good” ones, based on philosophy over financials. Now this book introduces a brand new breed of investor: The HIP Investor.
Written for those who want to profit handsomely while also building a better world, it will help you discover companies that are boosting the bottom line by solving key human needs through innovative products and services-benefiting customers, engaging employees, and delivering sustainable, profitable growth for their investors. That’s the Human Impact + Profit, or HIP, approach.
In The HIP Investor, R. Paul Herman-creator of the HIP methodology-introduces a revolutionary system that allows investors to profit and make a positive impact. It values measurable results over policies and philosophies, and shows how higher-performing companies can deliver both human impact and profit for shareholders.

Paul Herman
ISBN: 978-0-470-57512-3
322 pages
May 2010

This handbook provides an atlas of current practice in the field of responsible investment. With a large global team of expert contributors, the book explores the impact of responsible investment on key financial actors ranging from mainstream asset managers to religious organizations.
Offering students and researchers a comprehensive introduction to current scholarship and international structures in the expanding discipline of responsible investment, this handbook is vital reading across the fields of finance, economics and accounting.

Edited by Tessa Hebb, James P. Hawley, Andreas G.F. Hoepner, Agnes L. Neher, David Wood

Sustainable Investing is fast becoming the smart way of generating long-term returns. With conventional investors now scrambling to factor in issues such as climate change, this book captures a turning point in the evolution of global finance. Bringing together leading practitioners of Sustainable Investing from across the globe, this book charts how this agenda has evolved, what impact it has today, and what prospects are emerging for the years ahead. Sustainable Investing has already been outperforming the mainstream, and concerned investors need to know how best to position themselves for potentially radical market change.

Edited by Cary Krosinsky, Nick Robins

Capital Market Campaigning examines the huge growth in capital market campaigning and assesses the threats posed to companies and their investors. For the first time, you can read in detail about the full impact of such campaigns, and identify what risk mitigation strategies can be deployed by your company if it is targeted.

Edited By Steve Waygood
April 2006

It sounds like an oxymoron: Can you really make money as a socially responsible investor? The answer is, unquestionably, yes. The way you invest can contribute not only to your bottom line but also to a just and fair society. In Socially Responsible Investing, Amy Domini, the movement’s pioneer and the name behind the Domini 400 Social Index, shows you how.

Amy Domini

With concerns about climate change increasing among investors, many are looking for opportunities that offer positive social as well as monetary returns. Sustainable Investing for Institutional Investors: Risk, Regulation and Strategies explores the key issues related to “Socially Responsible Investment” (SRI) for institutional investors and trustees, including investment strategies, risk and returns, market data, regulatory frameworks, and more. Looking at all investment classes, including bonds, equities, real estate, commodities, and many others, the book provides an in-depth view of SRI-relevant asset classes to help you decide which is best for you.
To better contextualize SRI opportunities and challenges, the book presents 20 case studies involving institutional investors that are currently following a sustainable investment strategy and how they have approached SRI. For business leaders already familiar with or practicing corporate social responsibility and/or environmentally sustainable management, SRI is the next step to turning modern corporations into good citizens, and this book contains everything you need to get started.

  • Provides a comprehensive overview on all aspects of sustainable investing relevant for institutional investors and trustees
  • Explores sustainable investment strategies across all asset classes
  • Includes 20 SRI case studies that show investors at work around the world
  • Features a Foreword by Dr. Klaus Schwab, Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum

Mirjam Staub-Bisang
ISBN: 978-1-118-20317-0
256 pages
May 2012

Banking and finance play a fundamental role in public policy and economic performance as well as in all forms of commerce and industry. They are crucial in determining whether society – from governments to individual consumers – succeeds in following an environmentally sustainable path.
However, those working in the financial sector are largely unaware of the rationale and pressures for sustainable development and its bearing on their work, while those in the relevant research and policy areas commonly overlook how vital the financial sector is for progress.
This book sets out to rectify the state of affairs detailed above, in a style which is also accessible to those with no experience of sustainability or finance issues. It provides a comprehensive account of their interdependence: why the financial sector is crucial to achieving sustainability and why the triple bottom line of commercial, environmental and social success points the way forward for banking.
From a systematic assessment of major banks around the world and in-depth case studies, the book presents an analytical framework to understand current and possible future steps of the financial sector towards sustainability issues. It provides a comprehensive account of current best practice, an analysis of the differences in approach and performance, and recommendations of actions and policies for improved performance that will contribute to sustainable development.

Marcel Jeucken
426 pages
ISBN:  90 5972 036 9
Winter 2004/2005

This book integrates socially responsible investment into modern portfolio theory from a multi-criteria perspective. Socially responsible investment is a “new deal” championed by the institutional investment and bank sectors, agents that influence mutual funds and other collective investment schemes and which fear that financial strategies without ethical constraints can harm sustainable growth and prosperity. The book shows how to combine financial criteria such as profitability and risk with non-financial criteria such as the protection of the ecosystem, responsible consumption of energy, and healthcare campaigns. The book’s first part presents critical issues in ethical investment, while the second explains in detail the application of goal programming techniques for SRI funds, illustrating their use in actual cases. Part three demonstrates how compromise programming can be applied in the contexts of portfolio selection and risk management. Finally, in its fourth part the book examines the application of other decision-making support methods like the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) framework, the Reference Point Method, and soft computing techniques for portfolio selection.

Ballestero, Enrique; Pérez-Gladish, Blanca; Garcia-Bernabeu, Ana (Eds.)

Socially responsible investment (SRI) is becoming increasingly popular and can be potentially rewarding to all parties concerned. This book discusses the opportunities, challenges, and practices of SRI in a global financial environment in a consistent and integrated framework of risk management. It also covers a wide variety of environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) issues related to various participants, such as values-based retail, institutional investors, corporations, banks, supranational agencies, and non-governmental organizations.

Hung-Gay Fung, Sheryl A. Law and Jot Lau
March 2010


Changing Course is a practical introduction to new and necessary methods of running businesses so that the realities of business and the marketplace support the realities of the environment and the needs of human development.

Gathering the expertise of more than 50 leaders of multinational corporations and backed by an array of case studies showing existing best practices, Changing Course provides an extensive analysis of how the business community can adapt and contribute to the crucial goal of sustainable development—which combines the objectives of environmental protection and economic growth.

Stephan Schmidheiny
April 1992 | 373 p. | ISBN 0-262-69153-1

Over recent years there has been rapid consumer-led growth in investing in socially responsible companies to the extent that it has had an influence on corporate policies. New regulations recognise the public interest by requiring all pension funds to declare their ethical policy. Investors can no longer just consider the financial aspects of a company before investing but also have to consider the complex world of ethical investments.
Should the ethical policy take precedence over the financial aspects?
Should policies be inclusive or exclusive?
What percentage of a company’s income has to come from unacceptable sources before the source is excluded?
Should any exclusion policy also extend to those involved in selling or transporting goods deemed unacceptable?
This is the first book to look at socially responsible investment from the perspective of the institutional investor, who will be led through the complex dilemmas of socially responsible investment with practical examples and advice.

Russell Sparkes
ISBN: 978-0-471-49953-4
424 pages

Environmental asset classes are not a hope for tomorrow but a reality today. This new asset category promises to grow dramatically in the 21st Century as financial analysts, investors, and corporations around the world try to find ways to profit or reduce costs while promoting environmental social benefits. Sustainable Investing and Environmental Markets: Opportunities in a New Asset Class presents a groundbreaking new way to “do well and to do good”. With a combination of over 50 years of practical experience in the field of environmental finance, Richard Sandor, Nathan Clark, Murali Kanakasabai and Rafael Marques provide a solid preliminary understanding of the promising and transformational new investment category of environmental assets. Three broad asset classes — air and water; catastrophic and weather risk; and sustainability — are covered across 12 chapters which analyze how these environmental asset classes are currently being incorporated into commodities, fixed income, and equity instruments and what the future holds for the field.

Richard Sandor (Environmental Financial Products, LLC, USA), Murali Kanakasabai (Environmental Financial Products, LLC, USA), Rafael Marques (Environmental Financial Products, LLC, USA), Nathan Clark (Environmental Financial Products, LLC, USA)
December 2014
World Scientific

This is the first book to distill the best of the forward-looking ideas of socially responsible policies emerging from the corporate world. By following the suggestions detailed here, individuals can institute similar programs in their own companies—because it’s the right choice to make, and the smart one.
Something new is happening in the business world. Determined to stay competitive in an era of downsizing, companies are making a surprising discovery: Practices that benefit employees, communities, and the environment aren’t just good deeds—they’re also good business. The leaders of this new business vision include household names like Honeywell, Stride Rite, Hasbro, Reebok, and Levi Strauss & Co. These and other American companies have discovered that in order to create and sustain economic opportunity and reap the rewards of a good reputation, they must put their policies where their principles are in such diverse areas as work and family life, community welfare, and ecology. Whether you run a company or just work for one, you’ll find here abundant inspiration and examples of how businesses can safeguard the environment and improve the lot of their employees, their communities, and the world beyond while ensuring their own long-term profitability.

Joel Makower
January 2011

“Reduce, reuse, recycle” urge environmentalists; in other words, do more with less in order to minimize damage. As William McDonough and Michael Braungart argue in their provocative, visionary book, however, this approach perpetuates a one-way, “cradle to grave” manufacturing model that dates to the Industrial Revolution and casts off as much as 90 percent of the materials it uses as waste, much of it toxic. Why not challenge the notion that human industry must inevitably damage the natural world, they ask.
In fact, why not take nature itself as our model? A tree produces thousands of blossoms in order to create another tree, yet we do not consider its abundance wasteful but safe, beautiful, and highly effective; hence, “waste equals food” is the first principle the book sets forth. Products might be designed so that, after their useful life, they provide nourishment for something new-either as “biological nutrients” that safely re-enter the environment or as “technical nutrients” that circulate within closed-loop industrial cycles, without being “downcycled” into low-grade uses (as most “recyclables” now are).
Elaborating their principles from experience (re)designing everything from carpeting to corporate campuses, the authors make an exciting and viable case for change.

Michael Braungart, William McDonough
April 22, 2002

William McDonough and Michael Braungart imagine how human society might, at last, begin to rewrite its role in the history of the natural world. In The Upcycle, the best-selling authors offer numerous fascinating scenarios in which humans transcend the role of mere stewards of the planet. Instead, they suggest, why not become co-creators of the simplest invention ever: abundance?
Drawing on a decade of lessons in putting Cradle to Cradle concepts into practice with businesses, governments, and people around the world, McDonough and Braungart invite us to reimagine everything from doorknobs to the Hoover Dam. In a world that uses design as a tool for positive impact, industry can do better than “do no harm”: it can actively improve everything with which it comes into contact.

by William McDonough (Author), Michael Braungart (Author), Bill Clinton (Foreword)
April 2013

The practice of social and ethical accounting is emerging as a key tool for companies in the 1990s in response to calls for greater transparency and accountability to different stakeholders, and as a means for managing companies in increasingly complex situations where social and environmental issues are significant in securing business success. This is the first book to address the practice of social and ethical accounting, auditing and reporting, and its implications for the development of corporate social, ethical and environmental responsibility. It includes ten case studies, as well as an historical overview of the development of social and ethical accounting and reporting. The editors introduce a methodological framework that allows emerging practice worldwide to be analysed, understood and improved; and the case studies are written by the practitioners, giving insight into the experiences described. This innovative book, written by internationally acknowledged leaders in the field, will be of enormous value to business managers, particularly those with responsibility for corporate affairs, human resources, environmental management, financial management, or planning. It will also be a useful text for business students.

By Simon Zadek, Richard Evans, Peter Pruzan
September 2007

Recent surveys of international CEOs confirm that companies increasingly see sustainability as critical to their business strategy. The rigorous academic framework for the field of sustainable business required to respond to this need is now emerging. This book presents important new work in the theory of the sustainable firm, in the application of sustainability principles to key management disciplines, in sustainable business in practice, and in the international challenges that are critical to sustainability demands.

Edited by Geoffrey Wells
January 2013

Foundations of Sustainable Business is designed to introduce future business leaders to the most important social and environmental issues of our generation.  From the perspectives of a business thought-leader and a public interest policy expert, the text provides a comprehensive, balanced introduction to sustainable business that integrates sustainable policies into all core business functions, including leadership, finance, accounting, risk management, marketing, supply chain management, and operations.
Presenting sustainability as a strategic priority for all aspects of business, the text clearly defines all key concepts and shows how social, economic, and environmental trends are interconnected and relevant to corporate strategy. While the text provides an honest look at climate change, human trafficking, and environmental issues such as water shortage and ecosystem health, all normative guidance is based on traditional business value propositions, taking into account cost, risk, strategy, marketing potential, and operational feasibility.
Additionally, the text offers a variety of pedagogical tools in each chapter to provide an engaging, qualitative-based learning process.  Each chapter ends with original cases with focused questions that test comprehension of concepts. With in-chapter discussion questions, illustrative diagrams, ethical dilemmas, managerial insights, links to fascinating TED Talk videos, and on-point Harvard Business Review cases, Foundations of Sustainable Business is user-friendly for instructors and accessible to students.

Nada R. Sanders, John D. Wood
November 2014

Laudato Si’ – On Care for Our Common Home  is the new appeal from Pope Francis addressed to “every person living on this planet” for an inclusive dialogue about how we are shaping the future of our planet. Pope Francis calls the Church and the world to acknowledge the urgency of our environmental challenges and to join him in embarking on a new path. This encyclical is written with both hope and resolve, looking to our common future with candor and humility.

This book calls for the conditions of transition to sustainability: How to take into consideration new global phenomena such as and of the dimension of climate change, the depletion of natural resources, financial crises, demographic dynamics, global urbanization, migrations and mobility, while bearing in mind short-term or local place-based issues, such as social justice or quality of life? Meeting this challenge requires an inclusive approach of sustainability. It is a matter of designing a new social contract: Sustainability requires more than developing the right markets, institutions and metrics, it requires social momentum. To do so, many issues need a clear and complete answer: How to link social justice with sustainability policies? What governance tools to do so? What linkage between one decision-making level and the other? These are major issues to design sound transitions to sustainability.

Mancebo, François; Sachs, Ignacy (Eds.)

Jeffrey D. Sachs is one of the world’s most perceptive and original analysts of global development. In this major new work he presents a compelling and practical framework for how global citizens can use a holistic way forward to address the seemingly intractable worldwide problems of persistent extreme poverty, environmental degradation, and political-economic injustice: sustainable development.
Sachs offers readers, students, activists, environmentalists, and policy makers the tools, metrics, and practical pathways they need to achieve Sustainable Development Goals. Far more than a rhetorical exercise, this book is designed to inform, inspire, and spur action. Based on Sachs’s twelve years as director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, his thirteen years advising the United Nations secretary-general on the Millennium Development Goals, and his recent presentation of these ideas in a popular online course, The Age of Sustainable Development is a landmark publication and clarion call for all who care about our planet and global justice.

Jeffrey D. Sachs. Foreword by Ban Ki-moon
March 2015
Columbia University Press

The major challenge for the current generation of mankind is to develop a shared vision of a future that is both desirable to the vast majority of humanity and ecologically sustainable. Creating a Sustainable and Desirable Future offers a broad, critical discussion on what such a future should or can be, with global perspectives written by some of the world’s leading thinkers, including: Wendell Berry, Van Jones, Frances Moore Lappe, Peggy Liu, Hunter Lovins, Gus Speth, Bill McKibben, and many more.

by Robert Costanza and Ida Kubiszewski
April 2014