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The Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge

The deadline for submissions is February 13

The Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge seeks to identify outstanding proposals offering novel investment strategies to meet some of the most pressing global challenges ahead. As the world’s population approaches 9 billion people by the year 2050, the challenge of meeting human demand for scarce global resources will intensify.

Finance has a key role to play in meeting this challenge. Moreover, an increasing number of institutional investors are seeking sustainable investment opportunities for their portfolios. Specifically, these investors seek to identify investment strategies that can meet the financial needs of their organizations by investing in funds, investment vehicles, or direct investments that are consistent with the principles of sustainability and impact.

Teams are encouraged to think beyond social enterprises, venture capital fund vehicles and strategies. This competition requires you to propose and defend a sustainable impact investment strategy that uses finance and investment tools to create an innovative solution to an environmental or societal challenge.

Why Compete?

There are many competitions that focus on social entrepreneurship or early-stage investments. The Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge is different in that it focuses on scalable solutions created by finance. The Sustainable Investing Challenge asks you to consider finance and investment tools as a means to create an impact on their own and is one of the few ways for students to gain experience and get feedback crafting real proposals that fit into this critical and growing field. If you are interested in making finance a force for good or using finance to leverage impact, this is the competition for you.


  • Teams are limited to a maximum of four (4) members.

  • All team members must be currently enrolled in a graduate program at the time of the prospectus submission. Undergraduate students are not eligible.

  • Your team may include members from different graduate schools.

  • All ideas must be the original ideas of the team members.

  • As part of the Morgan Stanley Plastic Waste Resolution to prevent, reduce and remove 50 million metric tons of plastics waste from the environment, proposals that seek to address the issue of plastic waste will be eligible for an additional prize of $2,500.

Prospectus Requirements

Two-page prospectuses must be submitted in February. The prospectus should outline a unique sustainable investment strategy. The judges and selection committees are familiar with the broad area of sustainable investing, so avoid overemphasizing general observations about this section of the market. All prospectuses are required to have the following elements. These elements are the essentials of a competitive entry. Please review carefully, as failure to include any of the following will significantly reduce your competitiveness.Format

  • 2-page maximum, no cover page, no identifying information


  • Investment thesis

  • Fund size, investment size, and investment criteria

  • Diagram of fund or instrument

  • Asset class and capital structure


  • Target geography

  • Size of addressable market

  • Estimate of scalability

​Financial Model

  • Fees and incentives

  • Target investor pool(s)

  • Due diligence process

  • Returns and cash flows

  • If model must require philanthropic capital or concessionary returns, include proposed path to market-rate returns

  • Time horizon


  • Environmental or social impact thesis

  • Metrics to measure the impact


" Lighting the candle of others won’t blow yours out " - Al