Date of release: Tuesday, January 29, 2019

A new research institute has been launched at the University of Greenwich, positioned to play an important role in the growing international debate about new areas of risk.

Focussed on improving governance, business ethics and accountability, as well as looking at sustainable economic development, the institute aims to educate those who are not able to access the benefits of global capitalism but are exposed to its inherent risks on issues of economics, accounting and finance.

The Institute of Political Economy, Governance, Finance and Accountability (PEGFA) was launched on 24 January, with the launch event featuring speakers from across the academic and business sectors.

Allesandro Mele, CEO of EthicalFin, spoke about the need for a shift in how we think of money, moving away from seeing it as a 'demi-god' and instead towards the idea that it should be a used as a force for good.

Professor Engelbert Stockhammer, Professor of International Political Economy at King's College London, spoke of how finance is an inherently political topic and welcomed PEGFA as an institute that can bring Political Economy and Finance research together.

Keith Bradley, founder of Healthpad, discussed how economic growth in the future will not be centred on the West and the need for Western corporations to understand China's culture and economy moving forwards.

Speaking about the event, Professor Ozlem Onaran, Co-Director of PEGFA, said:

"For social, economic and ecological sustainability, we need to place policies to tackle inequalities at the heart of economic analysis.

"For example, our recent research shows that closing gender pay gaps and investing in public social infrastructure in care, education and health improves productivity, investment and employment.

Professor Alex Stojanovic, Co-Director of PEGFA, added:

"Unlike natural and economic resources, knowledge is not finite. It accumulates and grows and is enhanced through sharing and cooperation.

"However, we should not lose sight of wider social and environmental consequences of economic development or doing business. We should share knowledge about economics, accounting and finance and how we can support those who do not benefit from global capitalism or international trade.

"At PEGFA we are strongly committed to contributing to these objectives through our research work, industry links and international collaborations."

For more details on PEGFA, their aims, recent publications and members, please visit their website: https://www.gre.ac.uk/business/research/pegfa