A comparative and conceptual intellectual study of environmental topic in economic and finance

Meilan Yan, Youwei Li, Athanasios A. Pantelous, Samuel A. Vigne, Dalu Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


We aim to provide a comprehensive overview of the past, present, and future development of environmental related topics in Economics and Finance. In this regard, Environmental Finance (EF)- and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)-related literature is collected and analysed. The paper draws chronical pictures of the topic development in these two recently developed fields by applying bibliometric methods. Then, we provide a novel systemic comparison on their main differences. Reviewing the top journal publications, we identify literature gaps for a future research agenda. In particular, on the one hand, for EF, we suggest exploring various financial innovations to generate environmental benefits research, and thus building up efficient regulatory framework for addressing major regional and/or global environmental issues. On the other hand, for ESG, we respectively provide potential research directions to conduct the cost-benefit study on the real impact of ESG disclosure and to evaluate how ESG investment strategy efficiently deliver sustainable development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103023
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Review of Financial Analysis
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024


  • Bibliometric analysis
  • Environmental finance (EF)
  • Environmental social and governance (ESG)
  • ESG disclosure and investment
  • Financial innovations

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