The financial system has a crucial role to play in mobilising the resources needed to achieve a more sustainable future for all. That’s why the Financial System Benchmark aims to identify the actions that financial institutions can take to improve their impact on people, workers, communities and the environment.

Read more about our seven systems transformations

Scoping Report

Living within the means of our planet and leaving no one behind requires all economic activity to respect natural resource limitations and social norms. The financial system is the key enabler of economic activity, and therefore has a major role in influencing whether it respects these limitations and norms, or not.

Given this influence, and the systemic risk posed to the financial system by a failure to respect such limitations and norms, financial institutions need to take concerted action regarding their impact on people and the planet – direct and indirect, positive and negative, intended and unintended – defined relative to the global goals, such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Despite recent pledges, we lack an understanding of financial institutions’ actual contributions to the global goals. Our proposed benchmark, supported by funding from The IMPACT Programme, aims to encourage leadership from keystone financial institutions, and an acceleration in the evolution and uptake of disclosure frameworks that can enhance accountability and incentivise action in meeting the global goals.

We invite feedback on this scoping report from financial institutions, framework setters and accountability organisations, policymakers and regulators, and civil society. We are particularly interested in views from people in the global south, who stand to gain the most in the financial system transformation needed.

Access the full report by clicking the button below. We also produced an abridged version of the full report in Japanese, available here.

Read Scoping Report


The benchmark will assess 400 leading financial institutions on their contribution to the 2030 Agenda. During 2020, global consultations were conducted to map existing behaviours and assess the practical action possible. A methodology will be published by end 2021, compiling all feedback from our scoping report. Data collection, verification, and analysis of the 400 financial institutions in scope will take place in 2022, with the launch of the first benchmark due 2023.

  1. Scoping


  2. Scoping report

    January 2021

  3. Methodology Development


  4. Methodology report

    End of 2021

  5. Data collection and verification


  6. Baseline benchmark publication



See all

Get involved

As we build our work, we continue to engage with stakeholders across the globe through targeted communications with key organisations and representatives. We also encourage meaningful and constructive feedback.

Emilie Goodall

Lead Financial System Transformation

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