Dr. Olaf Weber appointed to EDC Environmental Finance Chair

OTTAWA, Feb. 9 /CNW Telbec/ - University of Waterloo (UW) and Export Development Canada (EDC) today announced the appointment of Dr. Olaf Weber as the first EDC Chair in Environmental Finance at the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development (SEED).

"Sponsoring Dr. Weber's work complements EDC's belief that socially responsible business is a distinct competitive advantage in the global marketplace," said Eric Siegel, EDC President and CEO.

"Dr. Weber's knowledge and future work will no doubt help advance the development of financial solutions for the growing environmental market."

In his new role, Dr. Weber will do research and teach in the field of environmental and sustainable finance putting a strong emphasis on the interaction between business and sustainable development.

The EDC Chair in Environmental Finance was created in June 2008. It is the first of its kind in North America. The position is designed to identify financial products and practices that will help companies engage in business practices such as socially responsible investing and integrate social and environmental performance measures into their business activities.

"Our partnership with EDC has enabled us to attract one of the world's foremost experts in translating corporate sustainable development performance into financial value," said Deep Saini, Dean of the Faculty of Environment. "Accordingly, we could not be more pleased with our EDC partnership, and with Dr. Weber as the newest member of our School of Environment, Enterprise and Development in the Faculty of Environment."

Dr. Weber has made a strong contribution to studies in environment, business and finance, globally. Most recently, Dr. Weber was a managing partner at GOE, a consulting firm for risk and decision-making based in Zurich, Switzerland. From 1993 until 2005 he was researcher and head of the sustainable banking group at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich. His main research activities are environmental and sustainability risk management in banking and the relation between sustainability and financial performance of firms. He was also a member of the boards of the Alternative Bank of Switzerland and of the Institute for Social Banking.

The funding of this Chair is part of EDC's longstanding commitment to promoting a trade culture in Canada in partnership with Canada's universities. Each year, through scholarships, development of case studies, and youth partnership programs, EDC reaches hundreds of Canadian students, opening important channels of communication with tomorrow's global business leaders.

The University of Waterloo has been ranked Canada's most innovative university for more than 15 years and is the largest co-op university in the world. Based in the Faculty of Environment at Waterloo, the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development is home to Canada's only undergraduate program to integrate environmental and business knowledge with 20 months of co-op work experience.

EDC is Canada's export credit agency, offering innovative commercial solutions to help Canadian exporters and investors expand their international business. EDC's knowledge and partnerships are used by more than 8,300 Canadian companies and their global customers in up to 200 markets worldwide each year. EDC is financially self-sustaining, a recognized leader in financial reporting and economic analysis, and has been recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers for nine consecutive years.

SOURCE Export Development Canada

For further information: For further information: Media contacts: Phil Taylor, Export Development Canada, Tel: (613) 598-2904, Blackberry: ptaylor@edc.ca; Steven Young, Director, School of Environment, Enterprise and Development (SEED), University of Waterloo, Tel: (519) 835-9660, Email: s4young@uwaterloo.ca

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