The Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec is backing McGill University’s launch of a sustainable growth initiative, a program dedicated to providing businesses with actionable solutions for building a more sustainable economy.

The SGI is a cross-faculty venture designed to help businesses aim for both profitability and achieving a positive social and environmental impact. Through research-to-action projects, engagement workshops, global student competitions, thought leadership and education, it will address some of the key challenges businesses face every day, according to a press release.

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Javad Nasiry, an associate professor of finance at the university, will serve as the program’s first director. To seed the SGI’s launch, the program received donations of $1.4 million from several organizations, including the Caisse.

According to the release, Kim Thomassin, executive vice-president and head of Quebec for the Caisse, said the institutional investor was intrigued by the program’s goal of putting environmental, social and governance issues as a research priority. “I am convinced that this partnership between the business and academic communities will allow the development of innovative solutions to support companies in the implementation of sustainable growth strategies.”

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