Thought Leadership

How would a person's carbon scorecard work?, The Straits Times, 22 April 2022

Low Tuck Kwong Distinguished Professor Sumit Agarwal shared the view on the one way to assess the impact of your carbon choices is by tracking digital spending


Ending cheap, convenient deliveries will help platform workers in Singapore, Channel News Asia, 24 March 2022

In the commentary, Low Tuck Kwong Distinguished Professor Sumit Agarwal, and Chua Yeow Hwee shares the legitimate concerns about platform work, is there a better way to help workers without distorting the market. It highlighted the growing concerns that such work offers little protection or a way out of precarity and proposed several interventions to support platform workers.


Asia needs more talent amid drive towards green economy, South China Morning Post, 19 March 2022

Associate Professor Zhang commented on the need for Asian talents for the sustainable development in Asia. Both corporate sector and financial sector need to gear up in hiring skilled labor force for the changing regulatory landscape and the increasing demand for greener products and investment vehicles.  


Race for scarce talent in green finance looming in Singapore, Channel News Asia, 17 March 2022

In a commentary, Low Tuck Kwong Distinguished Professor Sumit Agarwal, Assoc Prof Zhang Weina and Dean’s Chair and Assoc Prof Johan Sulaeman (all from the Dept of Finance and the Sustainable and Green Finance Institute) explain why we need more talents in green finance. NUS also recently launched the MSc in Sustainable and Green Finance programme.  


How to convince people to save electricity, iREUS Newsletter, 25 February 2022

Professor Sumit Agarwal and his team investigated the effectiveness of Singapore's energy campaigns in catalysing desired behaviours in the local population, and demonstrated that interventions which communicated economic gains clearly were more effective than those that did not.  


A carbon scorecard to help people make environmentally-friendly day-to-day choices, The Business Times, 28 February 2022

In its 2022 Budget announcement, Singapore will raise carbon price from $5 to $50-$80 per tonne of emissions by 2030. Consumers are the trigger to all supply chains and should participate fully in the transition from carbon-intensive products to a modern, sustainable economy. Professor Sumit Agarwal proposed the development of a carbon scorecard for individuals to help them understand the carbon impact of their consumption choices and motivate them towards adjusting their behaviour in response.  


Climate crisis: Hong Kong, UK and Singapore dive in, but are green bonds just greenwashing?, South China Morning Post, 08 March 2021

Associate Professor Weina Zhang commented on the risk of greenwashing in the rising of sovereign issuers of green bonds.  


A time for CSR to shine, The Business Times, 24 August 2020

Associate Professor Weina Zhang described a unique Private-Public-People collaborative model for CSR to accumulate social capital at firm-level, industry-level, and societal level in the midst of pandemic in Singapore.  


Green Finance, MediaCorp Channel 8, 26 November 2019

Associate Professor Weina Zhang discussed the definition of green finance, types of green related financial products for investment, green investors, and the role to be played by Singapore in the development of green finance going forward.  


A burning issue: Calculating the cost of the haze, TODAY, 23 September 2019

Together with his NUS colleagues, Professor Sumit Agarwal studied the financial impact of haze on Singapore, based on the risk avoidance behaviours by local residents and foreign travellers. To find an effective and lasting regional solution to the haze issue, he saw monetary incentive as the most powerful means to galvanize actions in changing behaviours. Studies; like the NUS study; which quantified the real economic cost of haze serve as a useful aid for governments and policymakers to justify using public funding for preventive and protective measures against the haze. 


What is sustainability reporting?, The Straits Times, 22 September 2019

In the financial quotient series, Associate Professor Weina Zhang described the definition and three key aspects of sustainability reporting in Singapore context.   


What is social return on investment?, The Straits Times, 07 July 2019

In the financial quotient series, Associate Professor Weina Zhang and Ruth Tan discussed in details what was social return on investment (SROI) and how it could be useful to evaluate the non-monetary impact generated by social/environment projects and activities. 


Air quality affects productivity: study, The New Paper, 14 May 2019

Through this research study on the productivity level of a group of taxi drivers when air quality worsened, Professor Sumit Agarwal cautioned on the wider detrimental effects of lower productivity not only on the personal health, but also the economy at large.  


Can firms do well by doing good?, The Business Times, 13 December 2018

Associate Professor Weina Zhang commented on the principles, benefits and practices of companies that were active in doing good. 


What are green bonds?, The Straits Times, 05 August 2018

In the financial quotient series, Associate Professor Weina Zhang explained that a green bond was a sustainable investment vehicle that provided investors with financial returns and an opportunity to be environmentally responsible. 


Bike-sharing: Balance between regulation, supporting innovation, The Straits Times, 14 July 2018

Bike sharing offers an innovative solution to the pollution and congestion problems facing urban cities around the world. Professor Sumit Agarwal reasoned that where a particular innovation could generate many positive externalities, regulators should support and manage its development and progress, as well as its wider impact. He argued the careful need to consider how regulation and innovation could work together to better support Singapore’s drive to encourage and nurture innovators. 


What is impact investing?, The Straits Times, 20 May 2018

In the financial quotient series, Associate Professor Weina Zhang explained that impact investing was an alternative but important consideration for investors who cared about environmental and social impact of their capital investment. 


When construction noise impacts electricity consumption, The Business Times, 20 April 2018

In a NUS study investigating electricity consumption of households involving 5,300 HDB blocks, Professor Sumit Agarwal shed light that the increased consumption of electricity by households near the sites to shield from noise pollution continued to be so even after construction had ended. Given the potential astronomical consumption involved when over one million HDB flats and many construction activities were factored in, he recommended real time data feeds to households on usage and cost to induce a change of behaviour away from the persistent habit of consuming electricity for ventilation comfort.  


Commentary: Beyond price hikes and conservation campaigns, saving water through smart showers, Channel News Asia, 27 March 2018

In this international research collaboration involving NUS to study how households’ shower water usage behaviour could be improved for water conservation, Professor Sumit Agarwal shared findings on how offering real data to households could promote awareness in water conservation, by getting them to set personal targets and giving them feedback on their usage performances as the means to persuade lower water consumption.