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2023/2024  BA-BPOLV1023U  Financing the Green Transition

English Title
Financing the Green Transition

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc/MSc i International Business and Politics, BSc
Course coordinator
  • Cornel Ban - Department of Organization (IOA)
Main academic disciplines
  • Organisation
  • Political leadership and public management
  • Sociology
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 27-01-2023

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Acquire systematic knowledge about the main financing channels for the green tradition. Acquire systematic knowledge about the financing channels of the green transition
  • Become capable to adjudicate policy and corporate dilemmas regarding the financing of the green transition.
  • Translate the knowledge about channels and trade offs into a public policy or corporate strategy memorandum
  • Lear how to translate the implications of academic readings into the language of practical documents.
  • Learn how to deal with societal challenges in ways that are both critical and practical
Financing the Green Transition:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance, see also the rules about examination forms in the programme regulations.
Individual or group exam Oral group exam based on written group product
Number of people in the group 3
Size of written product Max. 3 pages
3 page corporate memo on behalf of a real public institution or firms.

This memo is a loan concept whereby you pitch a business idea to be funded by an EU-level lender such as the European Investment Bank or InvestEU. Learning to write these memos is essential for acquiring the entrepreneurial knowledge required to address the challenges to humanity and Europe that these megatrends represent.

The structure of the corporate memo is as follows:

a.Briefly describe your business idea on behalf of an existing firm

b.Make the case that this idea addressed at least two megatrends discussed in class.Link the project to the current priorities of the funder.Show how the idea is relevant for the goals of national government strategies.

c.Present the business idea in greater detail

d.Establish the feasibility of the project given the history of the firm.Address potential economic and societal objections
Assignment type Report
Release of assignment An assigned subject is released in class
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
75 min. per group, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

1. Write corporate memo and get collective feedback

2. Write policy/corporate memorandum and submit

3. Oral exam based on the memorandum



Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

In less than 10 years green finance has gone mainstream. Between 2010 and 2019, more than 2.28 trillion euro went into building new renewable capacity globally, primarily solar and wind energy. However, it would cost around 100 trillion euro by 2050 to transform the energy and transport systems so that the planet stays below 2 degrees Celsius. As such, the current state of green finance is far from delivering the needed financing even if we add ongoing green fiscal spending plans from governments.


This course aims to unpack the financial and fiscal mechanisms that power current green transition strategies, identify their weaknesses and map out reform proposals so that the green financing gap is filled in due time. The course will dwell on academic readings and case studies of already financed projects from around the world.


The first part will focus on direct financing by the state via public financial institutions as well as by indirect means such as green innovation projects that technically fall under innovation policy. 


The second part focuses on conventional green finance coming from institutional investors and pension funds.


The third part dwells on other sources of private financing such as green mortgage loans and venture capital. The fourth part looks at the role of central banks and financial regulators in treating the climate crisis as a source of systemic financial risk.


The final part charts out radical green finance proposals such as the financial aspects of the Green New Deal and of degrowth finance.  

Description of the teaching methods
Health emergency circumstances permitting, online and offline course content will be combined in bespoke ways. The instructor will upload pre-recorded lectures, leaving the classroom time for activities whereby students benefit the most from lectures and direct interaction. The lectures will be recorded and posted on Canvas. In some weeks, the lectures will be followed by structured exercises whose content is posted on the syllabus.Peer grading of the one page corporate memo will accompany collective feedback from the instructor.
Feedback during the teaching period
2 Pop-up quizzes
Collective feedback on a one page pitch to be voluntarily submitted mid-semester by all groups.
Student workload
Preparation time 144 hours
Lectures 38 hours
Exam 24 hours
Expected literature

Merk, O., Saussier, S., Staropoli, C., Slack, E., & Kim, J. H. (2012). Financing green urban infrastructure.OECD

Semieniuk, Gregor, and Mariana Mazzucato. "Financing green growth." Handbook on Green Growth. Edward Elgar Publishing, 2019.

Della Croce, Raffaele, Christopher Kaminker, and Fiona Stewart. "The role of pension funds in financing green growth initiatives." (2011).OECD

Bergset, Linda. "The rationality and irrationality of financing green start-ups." Administrative Sciences 5.4 (2015): 260-285.

Spratt, Stephen. "Financing green transformations." The politics of green transformations. Routledge, 2015. 171-187.

Last updated on 27-01-2023