Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance

The Center for Sustainable Finance

The Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance focuses on providing venues for research and discussion of issues in the banking and financial services industry, as well as strategies to improve competence among Asian financial managers. It also facilitates beneficial alliances among business institutions in the region. 

The Center conducts research on wealth management and sustainable finance to help Asian financial managers reconcile economic performance with social and environmental impact. It also collaborates with professional associations and, with the help of its partners, hosts academic events, conferences, and training sessions for key certification requirements.

The Objectives of the JBF Center are:

  • to conduct research on policy issues that affect the banking industry and other allied services in the financial and capital markets in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific region,
  • to train and develop competent managers for the banking and financial services industries in the region,
  • to promote the forging of beneficial business alliances in the region and
  • to provide a forum for the discussion of important issues affecting the banking and finance sectors.

Our Benefactor

Jose "Jobo" B. Fernandez, Jr., former Philippine Central Bank Governor, was a pillar of strength, and an acknowledged leader in the private commercial banking sector.

It had always been Jobo's dream to establish his own bank. He wanted to organize a bank whose ownership was diversified. During those days, local private banks, including PBC, were all family-owned and managed. In 1959, with the encouragement of his friend, Washington SyCip, Jobo took the risk of organizing a truly professional bank, giving birth to the Far East Bank and Trust Company (FEBTC). He was, at 36, the country's youngest bank president.

He was President of the Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP) for three years and was regularly invited to attend annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development of the World Bank. He was also one of the pioneers in the establishment of the Pacific Basin Economic Council (PBEC) in 1967. PBEC is an international forum that foreshadowed the establishment of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (APEC). As an industry leader, one of his enduring legacies is his immense contribution to the training of competent managers in the Philippine banking and financial service sectors.

Executive Director

Dr. Felipe O. Calderon Profile



The Asian Institute of Management’s (AIM) Gov. Jose B. Fernandez Center for Sustainable Finance (JBF Center) participated in the Fair Finance Philippines’ Bank Policy Assessment 2022 Launch, which was held virtually on March 22, 2024, via Zoom. Representatives from regulators, financial institutions, academia, and civil society organizations attended the event. 

During the launch, JBF Center's Executive Director, Professor Felipe O. Calderon, CPA, CMA, PhD, shared his expertise in a presentation titled "Learnings and Experiences: Initiatives to Promote Sustainable Finance in the Banking Industry." In his presentation, Prof. Calderon emphasized the crucial role of banks in driving sustainability and shared the evolving regulatory policies concerning sustainable finance implementation. He also showcased sustainable finance initiatives undertaken by both international and local banks. 

Other notable speakers who attended the event were Atty. Mack Hale Bunagan, Program Lead of Fair Finance Philippines (FFPh); Marla Garin-Alvarez, Vice President and Head of Sustainability Office of BDO Unibank, Inc.; and Rhodora Brazil de Vera, Deputy Director, Supervisory Policy and Research Department of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. 

Since 2020, Fair Finance Philippines has been conducting annual assessments of major Philippine banks’ environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policies. These evaluations highlight how these policies can encourage banks to contribute to creating a more sustainable future. In its 2022 report, FFPh examined the lending and investment policies of BDO, BPI, Landbank, Metrobank, and RCBC against global benchmarks using the Fair Finance Guide Methodology. Read the full report to explore FFPh’s findings and insights into its assessment of the major Philippine banks’ commitments to responsible banking:


Professor Felipe Calderon served as a resource person at the P&A Grant Thornton Annual Professional Fair held virtually on February 13, 2024, organized by P&A Grant Thornton Philippines. In his talk, 'Sustainability and its Influence on Organizational Resilience, Disaster Recovery, and Business Continuity,' Professor Calderon highlighted the importance of sustainability for organizational success in navigating the dynamic business landscape amidst current uncertainties. The event was attended by 100 employees from P&A Grant Thornton Philippines and Grant Thornton ASEAN member firms.


Professor Felipe Calderon recently presided as a judge in the esteemed PwC Philippines' M&A Challenge, a premier business case competition attracting 99 registrations this year. The final round, held on January 19, 2024, featured six teams from different schools. Participants were tasked with assessing investment/divestment scenarios and providing recommendations aligned with sustainability objectives in the M&A context. This annual competition, in existence since 2016, provides undergraduates with a unique opportunity to hone their problem-solving skills as corporate finance advisors.


Professor Felipe Calderon was honored to serve as a guest speaker in the 66th Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines (RBAP) Charter Anniversary Symposium and Special General Membership Meeting held at The Rizal Park Hotel, Manila on the 22nd to 23rd of November 2023. United under the theme of Rural Bank: Promoting a Greener Future through Sustainable and Innovative Financing, this annual event brought together rural banks nationwide and representatives from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

Prof. Calderon showcased his expertise in sustainable finance by delivering a presentation titled Sustainable Finance Best Practices for Rural Banks. Acknowledging the banks’ role as key drivers of sustainability, he advocated for the establishment of positive and negative criteria in lending decisions as a starting point. He also talked about the opportunity for rural banks to offer sustainability-linked loans and ESG consultancy services to their clients, who are mainly consumers and MSMEs. In his address, Prof. Calderon also announced the Center's ongoing work: a research paper that explores ways to develop a sustainable finance model for rural banks. This initiative aims to provide rural banks with a step-by-step guide for implementing sustainable finance practices. 


The Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance at the Asian Institute of Management is pleased to announce the recipients of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Program Student Scholarship Grant for 2023. The scholarship is awarded to outstanding iMBA students each year as part of the CFA Institute's University Affiliation Program, in line with the Center's mission to train and develop competent Asian financial managers. The scholarship covers the enrollment and exam registration fees for any level of the CFA exam.

This year's scholarship recipients are: 

  • Marian Rikka Añora 
  • Kevin Mark Buencamino 
  • Ye Yint Htun 
  • Renzo Gabriel Fernandez

Individuals who aspire to become CFA charterholders need to complete their program of study, pass three levels of examinations, and meet other program requirements set by the CFA Institute. Once they have successfully completed all the requirements, they are awarded the professional credential that attests to their expertise in investment analysis, portfolio management, and wealth planning - a highly respected designation within the finance industry.

For more information regarding CFA scholarships, please visit or reach out to the Research Manager, Jannie Gracelyn Sumague, at  


In collaboration with the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), the AIM Gov. Jose B. Fernandez Center for Sustainable Finance (“JBF Center”) has made its intellectual contributions available to the PIDS Sustainable Economic Recovery Program - Publications (PIDS SERP-P) platform in its efforts to promote sustainable finance research and knowledge dissemination, accessible to a broader audience, including scholars, policymakers, and practitioners. This includes published working papers, handbooks, primers, and webinar materials of the JBF Center since 2020. These materials have been instrumental in shaping the discourse on sustainable finance and guiding financial institutions, regulators, civil society organizations, and businesses toward more responsible and sustainable banking practices.

The SERP-P platform, maintained by the PIDS, serves as a vital resource for researchers, policymakers, and other stakeholders interested in sustainable development in the Philippines. It provides a centralized repository of research publications, policy papers, and data related to economic development, sustainability, and recovery programs.

To explore and access the JBF Center’s research, publications, handbooks, primers, and AV materials, please visit the PIDS SERP-P platform at



AIM’s JBF Center Holds a Workshop on Sustainability and Sustainable Finance

The Asian Institute of Management’s (AIM) Gov. Jose B. Fernandez Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance (JBF Center) held its first hybrid training workshop on Sustainability and Sustainable Finance for Financial Institutions and Civil Society Organizations on 17 to 18 August 2023. The JBF Center collaborated with Fair Finance Asia – Philippines (FFA–Philippines) and The Initiatives for Dialogue & Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services, Inc. to promote responsible banking and sustainable finance in the Philippines. 

Dr. Felipe O. Calderon, Executive Director of the JBF Center, led the two-day training workshop attended by representatives from various banks across the country as well as various Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). The workshop covered various topics presented by eight resource persons from diverse backgrounds with the primary focus on educating the participants on how to integrate environmental, social, and governance considerations into their organizations’ operations and credit risk assessment.

The event was attended by notable resource persons such as the SAVP and Head of Sustainability of Security Bank Corporation, Nikki Lizares; VP and Head of Sustainability of BPI, Jo Ann Bueno-Eala; Research and Advocacy Advisor of Fair Finance Asia, Victoria Caranay; President of Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines, Atty. Mary Ann Tupasi-Saddul; Adjunct Faculty of Ateneo de Davao University, Dr. Maria Angela Zafra; Regional Program Lead of Fair Finance Asia, Bernadette Victorio; and Corporate Banker, Ryan Joseph Larobis.

One of the major highlights of the training was the comprehensive presentation of Atty. Tupasi-Saddul where she thoroughly discussed the major challenges that rural banks face when implementing sustainable finance. Dr. Calderon, on behalf of the JBF Center, pledged to develop a Sustainable Finance Model specifically tailored for rural banks based on the insights shared by the RBAP’s President.

A mix of online and onsite participants attended the workshop with 27 individuals attending in person while 31 joined via Zoom. Attendees gained a better understanding of their role in promoting sustainable finance in their operations and businesses they finance with training also covering the role of CSOs in carrying out research-based advocacies, monitoring, and reporting on responsible banking and sustainable finance. Additionally, participants gained valuable insights into sustainable finance implementation, delved into the different types and risks of greenwashing, and learned best practices from local and international banks.

To download the training agenda, please click here.

Implementing Sustainability in the Philippine Banking and Corporate Sectors

The AIM – Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance (JBF Center) was commissioned by Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services (IDEALS, Inc.) with funding from the Swedish Embassy in Bangkok through the Fair Finance Asia Philippines project to conduct a study on Implementing Sustainability in the Philippine Banking and Corporate Sectors.

IDEALS, Inc. provides development consulting and addresses the legal needs of marginalized, disempowered, and vulnerable groups, particularly agrarian reform beneficiaries, farmer-traders, and the migrants sector.

Fair Finance Asia is an Oxfam initiative with a regional network of 25 Asian civil society organizations committed to ensuring that financial institutions’ funding decisions in the region respect the social and environmental well-being of local communities.

The study identifies the opportunities and challenges in implementing sustainable business practices within the corporate world. It also explores the different sustainable finance opportunities and challenges experienced by the Philippine banking sector and investigates the level of implementation of integrating sustainable finance into banking operations.

To present the findings of the study and to facilitate a meaningful discussion on the topic, the JBF Center hosted a webinar last November 10 that was attended by 98 participants from local commercial, rural and thrift banks, SMEs, corporations, government, and the academe.

The findings of the study were presented by Maria Angela Zafra, DBA (Adjunct Faculty, Ateneo de Davao University) and Wilfred S. Manuela, PhD (Associate Professor, Asian Institute of Management).

The presentation of the research study findings was followed by a panel discussion moderated by Felipe O. Calderon, CPA, CMA, PhD, Executive Director of the JBF Center. The panel included: Agnes de Jesus, Chief Sustainability Officer of First Philippine Holdings Corporation; Raymund Vincent Aaron, the Banana Chief of Villa Socorro Farm; Ryan Joseph Larobis, Commercial Banker; and Bernadette Victorio, Regional Program Lead of Fair Finance Asia.

The webinar concluded with a Q&A wherein questions such as how the sustainable finance market in the Philippines compare to other ASEAN countries and how banks can assist in the streamlining of ESG in the corporate sector were addressed.

To watch the webinar, copy paste the link to your browser:

To download the paper, please click here.

The AIM Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance, in collaboration with the CFA Society Philippines and Fund Managers Association of the Philippines, concluded the three-phased research study on the asset management industry in the Philippines, particularly the UITF, Mutual Funds, and Variable Universal Life sectors. The study aimed to examine the current status, challenges, and future prospects of these three insurance sectors in the Philippines.

Assessment of the Asset Management Industry in the Philippines: The Case of the Variable Unit-Linked Insurance Sector

Please refer to the webinar for the presentation of the research findings and panel discussion with the regulators held on August 9, 2022.


Financing and Valuation of Ecosystem-based Adaptation

The Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance (JBF Center), commissioned by Earth Security and funded by the International Climate Initiative of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, recently completed a report on The Financial and Economic Case for Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) in the Philippines. This report provides an overview of financing EbA projects to help the banking and finance community appreciate the value of ecosystems and their role in mitigating the risks and negative impacts of climate change through EbA, which may result in more resilient businesses and communities. 

To share the findings of the study and to facilitate a meaningful discussion on the topic, the JBF Center and Earth Security will be conducting a webinar:

Financing and Valuation of Ecosystem-based Adaptation in the Philippines
August 18, 2021, Wednesday
3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

During the webinar, the report will be presented by Maria Angela G. Zafra, DBA, Wilfred S. Manuela Jr., PhD, and Felipe O. Calderon, CPA, CMA, PhD.

The presentation will be followed by a panel discussion to be moderated by Felipe O. Calderon, CPA, CMA, PhD with the following panelists: Paul D. Lazaro, Senior Vice President of Development Bank of the Philippines; Jo Ann B. Eala, Vice President of Bank of the Philippine Islands; Lyn Javier, Managing Director for Policy and Specialized Supervision of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas; Alfredo Coro II, Vice Mayor of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte; and Alejandro Litovksy, Chief Executive Officer of Earth Security. 

All participants will receive an e-copy of the condensed version of the report—a primer on Operationalizing Sustainable Finance for Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Projects and a handbook on Financing and Valuating Ecosystem-based Adaptation in the Philippines. The primer provides a step-by-step guide for bankers, to help them operationalize the financing of EbA projects. The handbook gives an overview of private financing options for EbA projects, investigates current practices of financing EbA projects, identifies potential factors that enable or hinder Philippine banks and financial institutions from offering financing for EbA projects, and examines the economic valuation of EbA projects and recommends policy options for the government and other stakeholders. 

Download the Primer here.

To register, please click here.

Download the Handbook here

For more information, please email JBF Center Research Manager, Jannie Gracelyn A. Sumague at

Assessment of the Asset Management Industry in the Philippines: The Case of the Mutual Fund Sector

Please refer to the webinar for the presentation of the research findings and panel discussion with the regulators held on August 12, 2021.

Download the Mutual Funds paper here.

Fair Finance Asia welcomes Prof. Felipe O. Calderon as Advisory Committee member

Webinar on Sustainable Finance and Economy: Prospects and Challenges with Kalpa Academy Center for Governance and Sustainable Development
22 August 2020

Webinar details

Assessment of the Asset Management Industry in the Philippines: The Case of the Unit Investment Trust Fund (UITF) Sector.pdf

Please refer to the webinar for the presentation of the research findings and panel discussion with the regulators held on July 4, 2020.

Marlon Young

Developing and Growing the Business Family Segment: A Forum for Private Bank and Wealth Management Executives

Dr. Felipe O. Calderon

The University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) College of Economics and Management (CEM) selected Dr. Felipe O. Calderon as one of its 100 Outstanding Alumni Awardees in celebration of CEM’s 100th Founding Anniversary on July 19, 2019.

Dr. Calderon was also selected by the University of the Philippines Los Baños Alumni Association, Inc. as one of its 2019 College Distinguished Alumni Awardees. 

Dr. Calderon was chosen for the two Alumnus awards “For his exemplary accomplishments in the field of sustainable banking and finance; for his unwavering passion and efforts to synergize his extensive experience in banking to academe and research; and for championing the value of sustainability in schools around the world by equipping  today’s business students with the understanding and ability to deliver change for tomorrow.”


Gov. Jose B. Fernandez, Jr. Center for Sustainable Finance

Felipe O. Calderon, CPA, CMA, PhD
Executive Director
Tel: +63 2 8892-4011 Ext. 2893

Jannie Gracelyn A. Sumague
Research Manager
Tel +63 2 8892-4011 Ext. 2622

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