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Sustainable funds: greenwishing or greenwashing

Eligibility: UK/International (including EU) graduates with the required entry requirements

Funding details: Stipend (up to 3.5 year) plus full tuition fee waiver for UK/International (including EU) candidates at international rates from September 22

Duration: Full-Time – three and a half years fixed term

Application deadline: 27 May 2023

Interview dates: Interview date will be confirmed to shortlisted candidates

Start date: September 2023 

To find out more about the project, please contact Dr Jin Suk Park –


Coventry University, UK (CU) and Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia (ITB) are inviting applications from suitably qualified graduates for a funded dual award PhD studentship on Sustainable Funds: Greenwishing or Greenwashing

In the last quarter in 2021, global investors poured $142 billon USD into sustainable funds and total assets reached $2,7 trillion USD worldwide according to Morningstar. The green boom is led by European and individual investors who want to make their investment socially responsible. For example, more than 75% of the funds are in Europe and one in three pounds of UK retail sold went into responsible products. However, the green boom initiated by honest ‘greenwishing’ can potentially develop into a bubble which eventually bursts like other historical bubbles that were not accompanied with fundamental growth. Many retail investors then are likely to face a severe loss of their investments. Furthermore, the practice of funds firms relying on third-party ESG ratings and promoting their funds by vague words such as ‘sustainable’, ‘green’, or ‘responsible’ create a serious risk of ‘greenwashing’, which can further harm the investors, too. Therefore, this project will examine whether a green bubble and/or its burst are under way and whether and how greenwish/washing affects the value of the funds, mainly by econometric techniques and partly supported by document analysis. This project will further consider the aspect of greenwishing and greenwashing in emerging markets.

Project Details

The PhD project is expected to be completed in 3.5 years. The successful candidate will be part of the Centre for Financial and Corporate Integrity (CFCI) and the School of Business and Management (SBM) and supported by a team of experts in financial markets and sustainable finance to complete the PhD project successfully.

This project, and related funding, forms part of a dual award PhD between Coventry University and Institut Teknologi Bandung and as such the candidate will be expected to spend up to 12 months in the partner institution (usually in Year 2). On successful completion of the dual award a PhD qualification from both Coventry University and Institut Teknologi Bandung is awarded.

This project will start at Institut Teknologu Bandung (Indonesia), so the expectation is that Year 2 will take place at Coventry University (UK). Year 3 onwards will be in Indonesia.


Tuition Fees

Full fee waiver

Stipend Bursary

Monthly stipend provided at the local rate (whilst in Indonesia approx. IDR 8 million) and whilst in the UK approx £1,500)

For up to 3.5 years

Additional Allowances

One time return economy airfare. £250 annual researcher development allowance for up to 3 years. 



The successful candidate will receive comprehensive research training including technical, personal and professional skills. All researchers at Coventry University (from PhD to Professor) are part of the Doctoral College and Centre for Research Capability and Development, which provides support with high-quality training and career development activities. The candidate will be directed to self-manage the project, adhering to the Ethics approval, Research Degree Development Agreement (RDDA) and Researcher Development Activity Plan (RDAP). The candidate will operate under the Vitae Researcher Development Framework.

The candidate will be supported throughout the PhD lifecycle. A formal bi-weekly meeting will be arranged with the candidate. The PhD student will be expected to complete the mandatory doctoral research training programme and have access to regular research seminars at CFCI and academic writing sessions. The PhD student will also be expected to present at the PGR seminar series and conferences, supported by a conference allowance.

Candidate Specification

Candidates to this programme must meet the entry requirements for both Coventry University and Institut Teknologi Bandung (School of Business and Management)

  • A minimum of a 2:1 first degree in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 60% mark in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 60% overall module average
  • The potential to engage in innovative research and to complete the PhD within 3.5 years
  • A minimum of English language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component)
  • Strong interest in interdisciplinary research
  • Business & management, social science, natural science or engineering background
  • Knowledge of statistics and data analysis
  • Ability to work independently and in a team
  • Effective time management and organisation skills
  • Strong knowledge of econometric analysis
  • Interest or knowledge of sustainable finance and funds

To find out more about the project please contact: Dr Jin Suk Park,

Candidates for this programme must apply to both Coventry University and School of Business and Management, Institut Teknology Bandung

To apply online please visit the SBM Institut Teknologi Bandung website.

All applications require full supporting documentation, and a covering letter – plus up-to 2000-word supporting statement is required showing how the applicant’s expertise and interests are relevant to the project. 

For more information, please see SBM Institut academic programmes.

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