Sustainability integration for sovereign debt investors: engaging with countries on the SDGs

JAP (Jan Anton) van Zanten*, Bhavya Sharma, Malene Christensen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Investors recently adopted a novel approach to sustainable investing: engaging with countries to advance sustainable development. But engaging with sovereign entities on sustainability challenges, like the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), is complex. To guide sovereign debt investors in operationalizing this new sustainable investing strategy, this methodology and policy paper creates a framework that navigates the sovereign engagement process. The framework answers three questions: (i) who to engage with; (ii) what to engage on; and (iii) how to engage. First, countries are prioritized based on the investor's investment exposure and the country's progress on the SDGs. Second, using public data, SDGs and sub-targets are identified that face slow progress, thus being priorities to engage on. Third, a detailed roadmap is provided that offers a systematic approach to engaging with the identified country on selected SDG(s). This sovereign SDG Engagement Framework aims to help investors and countries achieve their shared sustainability objectives.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Sustainable Finance and Investment
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


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