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A NEW SRI: Can Sustainable, Responsible & Islamic Finance Deliver More Impact Together?


Organized by

Held at

29 April 2019
Abu Dhabi, UAE

Now in its fourth year, The Responsible Finance & Investment Summit (RFI Summit) is an initiative of the RFI Foundation and Swiss Arab Network to build awareness of shared values that can bring socially responsible investing (SRI), environmental, social and governance (ESG) and Islamic finance together to increase their positive impact.

This Responsible Finance & Investment Summit brings together key stakeholders within responsible finance to build connections to new growth opportunities and more measurable impact. The RFI Summit will play a vital role in connecting representatives from across the responsible finance industry to build on the growing cooperation between SRI, ESG and Islamic finance.



how sustainable, responsible and Islamic finance connect


how responsible finance affects
financial outcomes


opportunities to benefit from
responsible finance


with other financial professionals around shared focus on responsible finance


the way that financial institutions
incorporate responsible finance


In panel discussions, interactive sessions and through participant contributions, we will focus on the five pillars of the Responsible Finance & Investment Summit

  • Define our shared objectives

    The Sustainable Development Goals
    promote consistency in our goals

    Advance cooperation by focusing on outcomes
    and using dialogue to overcome roadblocks

  • Attract new financial resources

    Responsible finance has the potential to scale
    up rapidly albeit from a small base in the GCC

    Islamic finance can lead growth in the GCC by
    expanding its focus on environmental & social impact

  • Make impact more intentional

    The balance between economic, social and environmental
    return may vary but commitment to impact cannot

    Measurement should be guided by intentional commitment
    to deliver positive or mitigate negative impact

  • Drive greater inclusion

    Bringing diverse perspectives opens responsible
    finance for the widest audience

    Different experiences and priorities promote
    innovation in responsible finance

  • Empower greater responsibility

    Technology moves faster across national borders
    than financial institutions and 80% of the global
    population lives in emerging markets

    Emerging markets are not just a large market
    but can be a great creator of innovation,
    including in responsible finance


Pre-Summit Roundtables

28 April 2019 | 9:00 – 12:00

Strategic philanthropy and Islamic finance

Strategic Partner

Strategic Philanthropy Partner

Roundtable Host

The roundtable will bring together leading humanitarian, development and Islamic finance organisations for a discussion about how Islamic financial institutions can become more strategic with their philanthropy.  It will also include discussion about how humanitarian organisations can work cooperatively to more effectively and efficiently using the participatory and inclusive model of Islamic social finance to improve outcomes.

Through their commercial operations, Islamic financial institutions generate significant funds for charitable purpose including zakat, CSR, and impermissible income that must be distributed to charitable causes. For many institutions, these funds have historically been distributed in a relatively ad hoc basis, missing an opportunity for them to act as strategic philanthropists and increase their positive impact.

The outcome of the roundtable will be a set of recommendations by the participants to improve the allocation, distribution and impact created by philanthropic giving by Islamic financial institutions.  These recommendations will be presented during the RFI Summit 2019 for discussion during the ‘unconference’ session.

28 April 2019 | 13:30 – 16:30

CDIT Roundtable



The CDIT Initiative emerged from a series of roundtables held as part of RFI Summit 2018. We announced publicly the progress on September 20th, during the third Value Based Investors and the SDGs conference organized by the Banco de la Nación Argentina on the sidelines of the G20.

The CDIT Initiative will provide financial institutions with the ability to prove their commitment to responsible finance. It will allow stakeholders interested in the financial sector’s activity to promote transparency and accountability.  It will provide a publicly-available database to coalesce all of the diverse practices used across the responsible finance industry.

The outcome of the roundtable will be a set of recommendations by the participants to promote interlinkages between the growth of responsible finance in the region and how it can catalyze further development in responsible FinTech.  These recommendations will be presented during the RFI Summit 2019 for discussion during the ‘unconference’ session.

You must be registered for the RFI Summit to request an invitation for the RFI Summit Roundtables. For more information, please email

RFI Summit 2019

29 April 2019: RFI Summit 2019 (ADGM Building Auditorium):

  • 8:00 - 8:50 Registration & coffee
  • 8:50 Welcome remarks

    Blake Goud, CEO, RFI Foundation
    Mounir Khouzami, Executive Board Member, Chairman of the Advisory Board and Co-Founder, Swiss Arab Network
    Thomas Hirschi, Banking & Insurance Executive Director, Financial Services Regulatory Authority, Abu Dhabi Global Market

  • 9:20 Keynote address – Why do we need A New SRI (Sustainable, Responsible & Islamic)?

    Keynote Speakers:
    H.R.H. Princess Sarah Zeid, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
    H.H. Sheikh Dr. Abdulaziz Al-Nuaimi, the ‘Green Sheikh’

  • 10:00 Panel 1: Risk management in a changing world: The financial implications of unsustainable finance

    • Moderator: Dr Cornelia Meyer, Chairman & CEO, MRL Corporation
    • Mustafa Adil, Head of Islamic Finance, Refinitiv
    • Dr. Erich Becker, Managing Partner, Exergy Capital
    • Niall Hannigan, Chief Financial Officer, Masdar
    • Inge Relph, Executive Director, Global Choices

  • 10:45 Case studies – Responsible Finance Champions (Group 1 - Banking)

    •  Moderator: Amal Daraghmeh Masri, CEO, Ougarit Group & Editor-in-Chief and Founder at Middle East Business News
    • Société Générale
      Richad Soundardjee, Group Chief Regional Officer, Middle East
      Deia Markova, Positive Impact Finance
    • CIMB Islamic
      Rafe Haneef, CEO

  • 11:30 Break
  • 11:45 Support Disruption for Good Challenge – Using technology to help financial institutions deliver economic, social and environmental good

    Sponsored by DDCAP Group 

  • 12:45 Case studies – Responsible finance champions (Group 2 – Asset Management & Capital Markets)

    • Moderator:  Jessica Robinson, Founder & Managing Director, Moxie Future
    • Christian Guckel, Chief Risk Officer, SEDCO Capital
    • Béatrice Delperdange, Head of Business Development, KOIS Invest
    • Ramya Gopalan, Global Innovation Coordinator and Alternative Financing Lead, International Federation of Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

  • 13:35 Lunch break and prayers
  • 14:30 Unconference – What barriers do we face to transforming responsible finance and how can technology, Islamic finance and Islamic social finance help make the transformation a reality?

    Moderator: Daud Vicary Abdullah, Trustee, RFI Foundation & Managing Director, DVA Consulting Sdn Bhd

  • 15:15 Conclusions & Looking Ahead
  • 15:30 Summit Concludes


H.R.H. Princess Sarah Zeid

Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

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H.H. Sheikh Dr. Abdulaziz Al-Nuaimi

The ‘Green Sheikh’

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Dr Amal Daraghmeh Masri

CEO, Ougarit Group & Editor-in-Chief
Founder, Middle East Business News and Magazine

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Béatrice Delperdange

Head of Business Development
KOIS Invest

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Blake Goud

RFI Foundation

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Dr Cornelia Meyer

Chairman & CEO
MRL Corporation

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Christian Guckel

Chief Risk Officer
SEDCO Capital

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Daud Vicary Abdullah

Trustee, RFI Foundation
Managing Director
, DVA Consulting Sdn Bhd

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Deia Markova

Positive Impact Finance
Société Générale

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Dr. Erich Becker

Managing Partner
Exergy Capital

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Inge Relph

Executive Director
Global Choices

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Jessica Robinson

Founder & Managing Director
Moxie Future

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Mounir Khouzami

Executive Board Member, Chairman of the Advisory Board and Co-Founder
Swiss Arab Network

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Mustafa Adil

Head of Islamic Finance

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Niall Hannigan

Chief Financial Officer

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Rafe Haneef

Chief Executive Officer
CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad

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Ramya Gopalan

Global Innovation Coordinator and Alternative Financing Lead
International Federation of Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

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Richad Soundardjee

Group Chief Regional Officer
Société Générale Middle East

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Thomas Hirschi

Banking & Insurance Executive Director, Financial Services Regulatory Authority
Abu Dhabi Global Market

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SDG Challenge Partners

The RFI Foundation is bringing back the Support Disruption for Good (SDG) Challenge for a third year to find the most promising ethical, responsible or Islamic FinTech innovation and connect them to the leading institutions in the responsible finance industry.

The Support Disruption for Good Challenge, sponsored by DDCAP, will focus on identifying FinTech companies whose products demonstrate market traction and whose technology helps the financial sector to increase the scope and impact of its responsible finance activities.

We are seeking applications from FinTechs and others who have developed technology that is useful to help financial institutions measure, manage and/or mitigate their indirect exposure to waste, emissions to air & water, and workplace safety & health.

The Support Disruption for Good Challenge, sponsored by DDCAP Group, will identify three winners who will receive airfare and hotel accommodation to enable their participation in the RFI Summit 2019 at Abu Dhabi Global Market.  All short-listed entrants will be invited to join a conference call with ADGM RegLab to learn more about the RegLab 4th cohort which has a theme of sustainable finance and the API economy.

Before presenting their business in front of 200 leaders looking for opportunities in responsible finance at RFI Summit, the three winners will have one-on-one meetings with the Abu Dhabi Global Market RegLab, which will close applications at the end of April for its fourth cohort.  All successful applicants have access to a digital sandbox service that enables them to integrate their solutions with banking data and functionality, and test the solutions for scalability and robustness.

The highest scoring of the three winners will be recognized with a cash prize, and will be provided a fast-track opportunity to advance within the application process for the Mohammed bin Rashid Innovation Fund (MBRIF) Accelerator.  The MBRIF Accelerator works to identify, equip, & support the highest potential innovators from around the world to thrive in the UAE.

Support Disruption for Good Challenge entrants will pass through an initial screening and then a short-list of 10 applications will be reviewed by an independent judging panel. Entrants who are included on the short-list will be notified the week of 25 March 2019.

The judging panel will review applications on the grounds of alignment with the environmental & social risks identified for the Challenge, the adoption potential by financial institutions, and the degree to which they can generate an impact in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.  More information is available in the Application Form and Terms & Conditions (see below).

Apply today to be considered for the Support Disruption for Good Challenge. For more information, please review the Terms & Conditions. Applications are due no later than 23:59 on 24 March 2019 Gulf Standard Time.

SDG Challenge 2019 Judges

Omar J. Lahyani

General Partner & Venture Catalyst
Alpha Omega Venture Partners

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Areije Al-Shakar

Senior Vice President Head, Development Services
Bahrain Development Bank

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Pam Attebery

Head of Innovation, MENAT Technology
HSBC Bank Middle East Limited

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Alex Collins

Managing Director
MBRIF Accelerator

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Nameer Khan

Founding Board Member
MENA FinTech Association

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David Barker

Authorisation Senior Manager
Financial Services Regulatory Authority
Abu Dhabi Global Market

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Inge Relph

Executive Director
Global Choices

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Past winners of the Support Disruption for Good Challenge

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Why Sponsor?

Responsible Investment & Finance Summit 2019 sponsors will have their contribution integrated in a way that augments the delegates’ experience to deliver the most authentic engagement for each sponsor through opportunities including:

Thought leadership

Generating borrowed interest via media (online, social)

Introductions to individual delegates


Use of conference content

Content generation

This is a unique opportunity to create greater awareness of your institution across an audience of influential senior decision makers from the responsible finance sector including senior management, analysts, legal experts and government representatives.

Interested in sponsoring the RFI Summit? Contact us.

Why Attend?


Responsible Investment & Finance Summit 2019 participants will be active participants in the Summit in a way that enhances knowledge, builds relationships and promotes engagement.  Here are a fewimportant reasons to attend the RFI Summit 2019:

  1. Become a part of the pioneering initiative to connect Islamic finance and ESG together to make the responsible finance industry more impactful.
  2. Learn from the global thoughts leaders in responsible and Islamic finance about the new trends in the industry.
  3. Be the first to learn about initiatives from policy makers and regulators in the industry.
  4. Meet 200 other senior professionals in the industry who are interested in expanding connections within responsible finance markets in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.
  5. Learn about new initiatives using technology to drive impact in responsible finance through the Support Disruption for Good Challenge which will recognize new leaders in enabling responsible finance.
  6. Become a part of the critical conversations with a global audience via the social media and engage with others in the responsible finance industry.
  7. Have the opportunity to interact directly with thought leaders in panel discussions and in an open format where you can shape the way forward.

Who’s Attending?


In addition to the board of trustees of the RFI Foundation, the summit will be attended by:

  1. International business leaders in the responsible and Islamic finance industry
  2. Dignitaries, policy makers, regulators and representatives of international organizations
  3. CIOs, economists, strategists, business specialists and professionals, mid-level management, business development managers, analysts.
  4. Leaders in rating, accounting and professional services
  5. Global thought leaders and experts in research
  6. Lawyers and legal experts
  7. Professors, academics and journalists

Our Partners for the Responsible Finance Summit


Knowledge Partner


Strategic Philanthropy Partner


Media Partners


Have an inquiry about the Responsible Finance & Investment Summit 2019?