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Can disruptive policy create a sustainable finance system?

By Chris Hewett

, by OpenDemocracy

The ideas for creating a new and sustainable finance system are out there. If this thinking doesn’t get greater exposure to policy makers and the media, the world of finance will remain a barrier to social and environmental progress.

Since the financial crisis of 2007/8, there remains an enduring understanding amongst commentators that the financial system, as it was structured up to 2007, was a major contributor to the crash. There are also well understood flaws in the system that, if rebuilt in the same way, are likely to be major barriers to supporting a sustainable, and socially just, economy. Issues such as short termism, the conflicts of interest between principal and agent in the investment supply chain, failure of the system to place value on environmental & social risks, and the sheer complexity of the financial markets all play a role in steering capital away from socially useful purposes just at the time we need it most.

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