College & University Endowments and the Principles for Responsible Investment: Aligning Investment Practices with Mission & Values
On September 16, 2014 the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the Intentional Endowments Network presented a webinar about the steps university endowments are taking to address sustainability issues in their investments, and how this fits with their roles as long-term investors.
This webinar provides an overview of the sustainable investing landscape and the spectrum of strategies available. It highlights the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), and offer insights from university representatives who have experience with PRI.
- Sonal Mahida, US Network Manager, Principles for Responsible Investment
- Dave Gorman, Director of Social Responsibility and Sustainability, University of Edinburgh
- John Pierce, Assistant Treasurer, Simon Fraser University
- Georges Dyer, Coordinator, Intentional Endowment Network
Slides: click here
Resources discussed in the conversation:
- Harvard Business School study: The Impact of Corporate Sustainability on Organizational Processes and Performance (pdf)
- CFA Institute: ESG Investing Resources
- DB Climate Change Advisors: Sustainable Investing: Establishing Long-Term Value and Performance (pdf)
- Links to organizations and initiatives mentioned (INCR, CDP, SASB, etc.)
- Resources from PRI:
- University of Edinburgh's Consultation Process
- Simon Fraser University's Responsible Investment Policy and Sustainability Strategic Plan
John Pierce, Assistant Treasurer, Simon Fraser University
John Pierce is the Assistant Treasurer of Simon Fraser University. SFU is consistently ranked among Canada's top comprehensive universities and is one of the top 50 universities in the world under 50 years old. With campuses in Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey, B.C., SFU engages actively with the community in its research and teaching, delivers almost 150 programs to more than 30,000 students, and has more than 130,000 alumni in 130 countries.
Dave Gorman, Director of Social Responsibility and Sustainability, University of Edinburgh
Dave Gorman is the Director for Social Responsibility and Sustainability at the University of Edinburg having previously been SEPA’s Head of Strategy. After qualifying as an engineer, Dave took two years out to do a wide variety of community work, before returning to do a Masters in Energy and Environmental Systems at Glasgow Caledonian University. His current role include senior leadership responsibility for the University’s social responsibility and sustainability activities, as well as strategic advice on climate change issues, energy and a wide range of social responsibility and investment issues.
Sonal Mahida, US Network Manager, Principles for Responsible Investment
Sonal Mahida is responsible for engaging with and supporting US investors in the practice and implementation of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) integration and risk management as part of her role leading the PRI’s US Network. Prior to joining PRI, Sonal focused on corporate sustainability reporting as part of the Environmental, Health and Safety team at Hess. She was Vice President of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), where she managed the organization’s US operations. Before joining CDP in 2008, Sonal was a Senior Governance Analyst at TIAA-CREF, where she led ESG dialogues and engagements with portfolio companies, and undertook internal proxy voting analysis. Sonal has been a frequent speaker at leading events from investor roundtables to major business conferences. She holds an M.B.A. in Finance from Boston University's School of Management and a B.A. from Barnard College, Columbia University.