What is The Grant Thornton Irish Funds Sustainathon all about?

This initiative involves entrants from across The Irish Funds Industry working together to identify and propose solutions to the sustainability agenda. The proposed solutions could relate to product innovations, new platforms for engagement, corporate initiatives, use of technologies, or other ideas.

The aim of the initiative is to promote collaboration across the industry and to identify and implement solutions that will benefit the industry as well as society as a whole.

It is centred around the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, and the impact the Funds Industry could make towards achieving these goals.

Participants will be asked to identify and assess achievable and impactful measures that the Funds Industry can implement, to help realise the objectives of these goals.

What is the 2020 focus?

In 2020, the focus will be on Goals 7 and 13: Affordable and Clean Energy, and Climate Action.

More info on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing - in a global partnership. They recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.


Who is the initiative open to?

Individuals at any level from Irish Funds member firms are invited to take part. Also, college students from any discipline (Environmental Science, Finance, Geography and Engineering etc.) are also encouraged to partake.

Why get involved?

There are benefits of participating for both companies and for individuals;

  • Potential to build your professional brand within the wider Funds Industry
  • Opportunity to learn from Industry experts
  • Get to know and share ideas with other professionals

For companies, it is an opportunity to participate in influencing the direction of the wider industry, to support a key CSR agenda, and for the potential to drive innovation.

What are the details?

Official registration will open in January 2020. Date to be confirmed.

Individuals must register their interest before Jan 31st. All individuals will be put into multi-disciplined teams and each team will be assigned a mentor. A launch event will be held in early March, after which teams will have until mid- April to work on and submit their entry. Shortlisted entries will be invited to present their proposal to the Judging Panel (in a dragons-den style), in early May, where the winning entry will be chosen.

The winning team will showcase their proposal at the Irish Funds Annual Conference, on May 21st 2020.

The winning team will also be awarded access to Grant Thornton’s Innovation Hub to enable the further development of the proposal. The Hub acceleration period will last 6-8 weeks, with the aim to support the journey of the winning proposal from ideation to prototype. (More details on the Innovation Hub will be provided at a later stage.)