Wharton Launches Online ESG Specialization on Coursera

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Wharton Online’s newest specialization provides fundamental concepts and application as the demand for ESG expertise in business increases

PHILADELPHIA, February 10, 2022 — With more and more businesses committing to greater sustainability, there is growing demand for talent with environmental, social and governance (ESG) expertise according a recent Financial Times article highlighting the emergence of ESG investments and net zero pledges.

To address the risks, opportunities and factors associated with ESG in business, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is pleased to announce a new online specialization: The Materiality of ESG Factors. Using insight and expertise from four esteemed Wharton faculty, the Materiality of ESG Specialization is designed to provide learners with the fundamentals and history of ESG investing, and a close examination of the set of investment approaches that are informed by environmental, social and governance factors.

“Through this Specialization, my fellow colleagues and I hope to redefine the frontier of business to encompass new data and analytics that integrate ESG factors into business decision-making,” says Witold Henisz, Deloitte & Touche Professor of Management and Founder of Wharton’s ESG Analytics Lab. “If you recognize that climate risk, racial justice and other forms of inequality are material to your business and investment decisions, but aren’t sure where to start on adapting your strategy, then taking this Specialization is a great first step.”

The four-course Specialization includes courses titled: “ESG Risks and Opportunities,” “ESG Impact: Investor Perspective,” “ESG and Climate Change,” and “ESG and Social Activism.” Learners will receive a digital certificate and badge upon completion. In addition to Professor Vit Henisz, the Specialization also features Wharton Professors Chris Geczy, Sarah Light and Mary-Hunter (Mae) McDonnell, who are also contributors to Wharton’s ESG Analytics Lab.

The Materiality of ESG Factors is useful for students and professionals who work in a variety of industries where sustainability is either an emerging or existing strategy for business.

“Reports of progress on metrics related to ESG factors are now on the agenda for most corporate board meetings, and are important considerations for investors.  And apart from the business imperatives, our collective response to these challenges is important work for all of us who share this same fragile world,” says Don Huesman, Managing Director of Online Learning at Wharton Online. “At Wharton it is in our nature to develop communities of inquiry around important and emerging issues related to economics and commerce.  The Materiality of ESG Specialization provides the opportunity for our learners to investigate the importance of ESG in our collective future.”

With the addition of the Materiality of ESG Factors Specialization, Wharton Online now offers sixteen certificate programs and over eighty courses. Wharton’s the Materiality of ESG Factors Specialization is available to anyone at https://www.coursera.org/specializations/materiality-esg-factors.

About Wharton Online

Wharton Online, the Wharton School’s digital learning platform, makes high-quality business education available to learners anytime and anywhere. From certificate programs that issue Continuing Education Units to specializations across a variety of business and management topics, Wharton Online’s offerings equip learners to advance their careers. And with 280K certificate-earning learners and more than three million total learners who have accessed courses, Wharton Online boasts an impressive network of business leaders around the globe.

About the Wharton School

Founded in 1881 as the world’s first collegiate business school, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is shaping the future of business by incubating ideas, driving insights, and creating leaders who change the world. With a faculty of more than 235 renowned professors, Wharton has 5,000 undergraduateMBAexecutive MBA, and doctoral students. Each year 13,000 professionals from around the world advance their careers through Wharton Executive Education’s individual, company-customized, and online programs. More than 100,000 Wharton alumni form a powerful global network of leaders who transform business every day. For more information, visit www.wharton.upenn.edu.