The Power of Narrative to Change Behaviour Onceupon a time

Two kinds of goals for market operators: sustainability for financial reasons and as an end in itself

Broadly, there are two basic motivations for acting based on sustainability factors: achieving financial goals and achieving sustainability goals as ends in themselves. 

Businesses and investors operate out of legal structures. The laws governing those structures fundamentally shape what they can do. When it comes to legal rules, motives are important, so it is crucial to be clear how sustainability factors are motivating business or financial decisions in any given case.

Legal duties generally allow for sustainability-related activity that is financially instrumental. Business and finance operators established as companies also often have scope to engage in sustainability-related activity as an end in itself. However, the room for some categories of institutional investor to do so is more limited.