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Half of parents say financial services ‘not socially responsible’



Nearly half of parents (44%) think working in financial services is “not socially responsible”, according to a new survey that suggests young people are being put off the industry by the generation above them.

While 78% agreed that jobs in the industry could pay well, 62% said they would also be “stressful”. Less than a quarter (23%) of the 1,142 parents surveyed claimed to have a ‘fair’ or ‘strong’ understanding of the sector.

Meanwhile, out of over 800 teachers, six out of 10 said they did not understand financial services. This has led to less than half (44%) discussing the industry as a viable career option with students.

With teachers ranking third in young people’s most used sources of information on jobs, behind the internet and their parents, this knowledge gap is likely to have put many students off from considering careers in finance.

The same survey, conducted by YouGov on behalf of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI), found less than one in 10 young people said they would be interested in working in financial services, with around a quarter (24%) lacking sufficient knowledge.

The CISI blamed insufficient financial education among parents and teachers for the “prejudice”.

Simon Cuhane, CISI chief executive, said, “Poor numeracy skills on the part of both adults and young people in the UK are creating a vicious circle and an inherent fear of numbers.

This, in turn, seems to be contributing to a low level prejudice against financial services as a career amongst young people’s key influencers, teachers and parents.”

Of the 508 eight to 15-year-olds surveyed by the CISI, 34% said a career in technology would interest them. Engineering (23%) and policing (22%) were also popular. Only the construction industry (7%) was rated lower than financial services (9%).

Over half (53%) of young people said a typical day in financial services would be “boring”, while 50% said it would be “full of numbers”.

Simon Howard, chief executive of the trade body the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF), said the survey results confirmed that the finance sector had “failed to maintain trust”.

He added, “Finance has always been complex, but in the past we were trusted. Given the past few years it is not surprising that the complexity is now viewed with suspicion by teachers, parents and young people. In particular it is a great shame that 44% of parents feel that working in financial services is ‘not socially responsible’.

We need to address this. While there is no doubt that the sector has some way to go to fully integrate sustainable and socially responsible practices, it is important we recognise and support the large body of financial service professionals who specialise in and are champions for sustainable and socially responsible finance.

This supports the case for better, more accessible and transparent communications that take into account the public’s desire for a socially responsible service and industry.”

Further reading:

Graduates are snubbing banks, but all banks are not the same

65% of university students want ‘impact jobs’

Setting a sustainable example in our education system

Young jobseekers increasingly considering ethics

Unilever, John Lewis, and M&S in top 10 most sought-after employers


A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon




energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”



IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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