"Operating under the radar" -- that is, various categories of institutional investors getting active in the "investor activist" game? Bruce Goldfarb, CEO of Okapi Partners, describes a sea change that he sees that is underway, the trend in how large institutions are approaching in the [investor] push for corporate change. The lens is the annual corporate proxy season and the many campaigns therein, including the 2017 campaign. Okapi is one of the influential proxy advisors for both investor and companies, working on some 48 campaigns during 2017.
The S&P 500 (R) universe of large-cap companies is the most widely used gauge for investors of large-cap U.S. corporate entities. There is more than US$7 trillion investments benchmarked to the S&P 500, with index assets of almost $2 trillion represented. The index captures more than 80 percent of available market capitalization, notes owner S&P Dow Jones Indexes / McGraw Hill Financial.
We've been sharing news and perspectives on recent developments in l'affaires climate change, with the US government [at the Federal level] abandoning the landmark Paris Agreement (the COP 21 accomplishments, with almost 200 nations participating).
The GRI framework for corporate, institutional and organizational sustainability reporting has been in place since 1999-2000. Since those early days (when a handful of organizations published sustainability reports), the framework has been through four iterations ("G1" to "G4") and in October 2016 GRI launched the world's first global standards for sustainability reporting. More than 40,000 reports are now in the GRI Sustainability Disclosure Database (database.globalreporting.org). GRI is headquartered in Amsterdam, The
The good news is that more public company managements are involved in, and approving, broader disclosure on sustainability information. There are widely-accepted frameworks in place to help boards and managements better understand the needs and desires of stakeholders -- especially providers of capital (asset owners, managers, analysts) seeking meaningful data and accompanying narrative to explain the progress being made (or lack thereof) in ESG performance.
"Resolute!" - The root of the word comes down to us from the ancient Latin, meaning (over many centuries) to decide on and stay with a course of action. We're seeing that these days in the "resolve" of the US corporate community, in the resolute actions of many cities and municipalities, in the actions of a growing number of US states, and among institutional investors of all types, shapes and forms.
Everyone in the investing world and the corporate suite knows of the importance of the S&P 500 Index®; it's the intellectual property of the S&P Dow Jones Indices unit of S&P Global and is the widely used benchmark by which asset managers track their performance (against the index performance).
We have made tremendous progress over the last 10 years in such areas as the embrace of corporate sustainability, corporate responsibility, corporate citizenship, and related approaches by the global corporate sector...and in the continuing adoption of sustainable investment policies and approaches by a widening universe of institutional and individual investors.
Important elements of the Governance & Accountability Institute mission are to share knowledge, perspectives and information about the opportunities in corporate responsibility, including career paths to success, and to do the same for men and women interested in sharpening their focus in the financial community, with the continuing embrace of ESG approaches by investment firms of all types ("sustainable investing").
New date is fast approaching for for the second "Introduction to Corporate ESG for Investment & Finance Professionals Certification" scheduled for June 15, 2017. This full-day course is offered by Governance & Accountability Institute and Global Change Associates and is being hosted at Baruch College/CUNY at The Newman Vertical Campus in New York City.