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“Our Common Home”: Finance, Faith, and Civil Society on Healing the Planet


Oct 26, 2017 - 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.


Columbia University, Pulitzer Hall, Lecture Hall

“Our Common Home”: Finance, Faith and Civil Society on Healing the Planet
The Emerging Alignment of Financial Systems and Spiritual and Ethical Considerations

Climate change is cause and effect in the accelerating damage to nature brought about by our unsustainable practices, and in the consequent negative outcomes for society, and for the poor who are taking the brunt of the ill effects. Finance and civil society together can forge a way ahead to address this intertwined challenge, to transform and heal our world.

One of the main messages of the Pope Francis’ 2015 Encyclical Letter, On Care for Our Common Home, is that society and environment deteriorate or advance together. It articulates the connection between the two, between environmental and social justice, and the importance of that connection. The message of this historic document, and similar documents of other faiths and spiritualities, suggests common ground from which to change the game and the terms of the game.

This Earth Institute/REIL town hall will be deliberative discussion among business and finance, government, and faith leaders about lessons on transforming markets and finance which can be drawn from the Encyclical:

What are the ways in which the business and finance community can actualize the vision presented in Laudato Si’? Are there messages and ideas from business and finance that they wish to share on the subject of markets and capitalism as it relates to the moral, ethical and scientific content of the Encyclical and similar documents of others faiths and spiritualities?

Panelists will participate in a moderated discussion for 45 minutes. There will be a Q&A with audience members for 45 minutes.

About REIL

REIL is a below-the-horizon, interdisciplinary group of experts founded in 2002. Its roundtables gather a cross-section of devoted, committed people from various fields who are working on the issues of sustainability from various vantage points, including law, policy, NGO's, finance, business, activists, science, academics, and clerics.


(Moderator) Peter Goldmark, past Chairman & CEO, International Herald Tribune; past President, Rockefeller Foundation
Hilary Irby, Global Co-Head, Global Sustainable Finance Group, Morgan Stanley
Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Finance, Office of the Governor, The State of New York
S.E. Monsignor Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo, Chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and Chancellor of Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, The Vatican
Rey Ramsey, Managing Partner, Centri Capital
Jackie VanderBrug, Managing Director and Investment Strategist, U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management within the Global Wealth & Investment Management Division of Bank of America