Major Roles in Banking


Green and Sustainable Finance

Climate change is one of the most pressing concerns confronting the public and private sectors worldwide. The financial industry, in particular, has been paying increasing effort to contribute to a more green and sustainable future. Green and sustainability initiatives in banking aim to raise awareness, step up engagement and enhance the sector’s capabilities. Increasingly, the sector is opening up positions to deliver financial solutions that support the transition to a sustainable business model and low-carbon economy, resulting in greater demand for environmental, social and governance (ESG) talent. Banks should ensure that sufficient internal resources are allocated to implementing climate strategies while enhancing capacity building, recruitment and the data management system and framework.

Major job responsibilities

Green and sustainability policy analysis
  • Conduct research on industry-specific certification programmes and international best practices.
  • Review government guidelines and policies.
  • Formulate bank policy on green and sustainable banking.
  • Develop quantifiable metrics to aid in tracking and reporting, for example, climate-related risk exposures.
Green and sustainability initiatives, as well as banking services integration
  • Integrate ESG considerations into banking products.
  • Help launch offerings in green and sustainable financing.
  • Establish business objectives for sustainable finance, advisory, and investment.
  • Develop and implement strategies and plans to address the opportunities arising from climate change.
Climate risk and green compliance
  • Identify factors that influence business decisions.
  • Analyse trends and patterns to formulate risk mitigation strategies.
  • Integrate climate-related considerations into governance structures.
  • Carry out climate-related risk assessments in certain transactions and clients.
  • Manage the carbon footprint of their own operations to align with company or wider standards.
Investor education and community engagement
  • Prepare presentations and communicate with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Collaborate with non-governmental organisations.
  • Deliver workshops to engage and educate bank staff and the community.
  • Reach out to internal and external stakeholders to ascertain social expectations.

Relevant professional qualifications

Important skills and knowledge

Green finance, sustainability and ESG knowledge
  • Ability to plan broadly and comprehensively
  • Expertise in ESG trends and developments
  • Working knowledge of green policies and governance requirements
  • Business acumen and a strong grasp of climate risk management
Financial and banking knowledge
  • Understanding of financial products and internal controls
  • Provision of convenient and secure banking to customers
  • Sensitivity to the socioeconomic and financial impacts of green finance
  • Practical understanding of product issuance, design, and sales procedures
Disclosure, communication and presentation skills
  • Effective communication abilities
  • A collaborative mentality
  • Organisational skills for holding community and educational workshops

A day in the life of a
Green and Sustainable Finance Specialist

Stay current on ESG trends and in green and sustainable finance.
Prepare the overall green and sustainable banking strategy and plans.
Discuss with the investment team the product design and theme and the launch timeline.
Go through the annual reports of relevant companies, any white papers from regulators and NGO policy papers.
Write reports on specific findings, including the social impacts and potential risks of green finance.
Conduct internal briefings on the adoption of the latest green and sustainable finance practices.
Study clients’ emission data to determine their capacity to manage climate-related risk and transition strategies.
Conduct reviews to identify the impacts of both physical and transitional risks at the portfolio and operational levels.
Oversee active engagement with customers to maintain ongoing dialogue and interaction in terms of ESG strategy.

Typical career path

Green and sustainable banking opens up diversified career paths for financial practitioners, including strategic analysis, product development, policy research and stakeholder engagement, based on the individual’s area of expertise and work focus.

Depending on the corporate needs of the financial institution, some junior roles may concentrate on a more specific area, such as research and consultation on local and global ESG initiatives.

Practitioners must keep track of carbon market developments and adopt ways of validating green targets. They may later advance into managerial positions in risk strategy or sustainable investing within the bank.