The CFI Debate 2017

Ethical investment is the pursuit of shareholder value

The Centre for Finance and Investment (CFI) and Ethical Finance Hub, invited financial practioners, students and members to join us for the CFI Debate on 9th February 2017 at Heriot-Watt University, Riccarton Campus.


The CFI brings Heriot-Watt academics with an interest in finance and investment together with senior practitioners, to explore areas of mutual interest and thereby increase the practical relevance of our teaching and research. This year’s event is being organised in partnership with the Scottish Government-backed Ethical Finance Hub, which offers a platform to promote collaboration, research, innovation and growth in the ethical finance market.

The last 20 years has seen the emergence of approaches to investment which have appropriated the term ‘ethical’, including investment to achieve environmental objectives, screening for conformity with environment, social and governance requirements, and faith-based approaches, especially Islamic finance. The topic for this debate provocatively dismisses this appropriation of ethics, claiming that the pursuit of shareholder value is the only guide that professional investors require.


Our speakers for the evening were:


Professor Robin Angus, Executive Director, Personal Assets Trust and an Honorary Professor, Heriot-Watt University.

Bill Dinning, Non-Executive Director, Medical Defence Union.



Professor Iqbal Asaria CBE, Islamic  finance consultant and academic.

Tomas Carruthers, Chief Executive Officer, Social Stock Exchange.


An article on the debate was published in The Scotman newspaper on the 17th February 2017:

Time to take an Ethical Approach to Investments


Dr Edward Jones
Director of the Centre for Finance and Investment
School of Management and Languages
Heriot-Watt University