top of page
  • Writer's pictureCory Cleveland


Updated: May 28, 2023

Yrjo Koskinen at The Insider's Guide to Business
Yrjo explains why companies have a profit-maximizing interest to be sustainable.

No matter your industry, sustainable finance is a hot topic. Before COVID-19, it was clear that green investments were on the rise. But how has this trend shifted more than two years into the pandemic? Will investor appetite for ESG change going forward? Today, we sit down with Dr. Yrjo Koskinen. He is a Professor of Finance and Associate Dean of Research and Business Impact at the Haskayne School of Business.

In our conversation, we dive into sustainable finance, one of Yrjo’s areas of expertise. What does sustainability mean given today's inflation and is it attainable in our post-pandemic world? His other research interests include climate change and the energy transition, corporate finance and governance, corporate social responsibility, and the effects of limited liability on corporations.

The world has changed in many different ways. For example, consumers these days demand that corporations are more sustainable and they are willing to pay premium prices for sustainable products. [Companies] have a self-interest, a profit-maximizing interest, to be sustainable.Yrjo Koskinen [0:08:09]

You’ll gain insight into profit-maximizing interests that corporations have to be sustainable. Yrjo shares some demonstrated sustainable finance success stories. We dive into the growing responsibility that ESG investors have to consider. Human rights, democracy, and geopolitics. It's not only about climate change!

Living your mission, living your vision; that’s the hard part. Then, you might be wrong and the returns might never come. It’s not easy to create these great companies that people really believe in.Yrjo Koskinen [0:42:34]

As per Alex Edmans in Grow the Pie, Yrjo believes that companies that don’t try to maximize profits, can generate meaningful long-term returns with a higher purpose.

You'll walk away with some valuable observations about sustainable finance. We hope you enjoy this episode!


  • Yrjo’s view of how academic culture differs between institutions in the US and Canada.

  • An overview of some of the research Yrjo has done on corporate and sustainable finance.

  • The profit-maximizing interest corporations have to be sustainable.

  • How investor appetite for ESG might change when faced with future economic changes.

  • Yrjo’s perspective on how conflict in Ukraine will affect natural gas exports from Russia and impact global economies.

  • Why ESG investing also needs to consider geopolitics, democracy, and human rights.

  • Reflecting on some of the successes and failures of the Canadian oil and gas industry.

  • Why CEOs need to start thinking in different ways to survive beyond 2050.

  • Yrjo shares his take on ESG in the world of mutual funds.

  • How Yrjo measures returns in his studies and some of the challenges he encounters.

  • Why Canada will need to diversify its economies to prosper going forward.

  • One of the most influential discoveries Yrjo made about ESG stocks during COVID.

Sign up for our FREE 5-part master class Investor Marketing 2.0



bottom of page