Weekly News Round-Up: April 5, 2019

Please find this week's news round-up below.

A week that includes both April Fool’s Day and Equal Pay Day puts our skills at compiling a wide survey of relevant news stories to the test. This week’s summary includes several new reports on the scope, scale, and impact of sustainable investing, a Gender Pay Scorecard, and reminders of upcoming opportunities to join your Intentional Endowments Network colleagues face-to-face at events in New Haven, Durham, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Berkeley, and more.

Additionally, last week IEN launched a mentorship program for pairing students with experts from the sustainable investing industry. If you are a current professional at an IEN member institution working in any area of the sustainable investing industry, please consider signing up to be a mentor, and if you are a current graduate or undergraduate student interested in learning more about the sustainable investing field and being paired with a mentor, please consider signing up to be a mentee.

Have a great weekend, 
Hannah

Hannah Bowen
Network Manager, The Intentional Endowments Network
www.intentionalendowments.org

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Opportunities for Action

GIIN Survey: Understanding Faith-Based Investing | Global Impact Investing Network

  • Deadline: April 26, 2019. The GIIN invites organizations that manage a faith-based investment portfolio, e.g., use tenets/values of faith to shape the organization’s investment policies and processes, to participate in a new GIIN study. Collection of this data contributes to a wider effort at the GIIN to raise awareness about faith-based investors’ activities and support their efforts to align values with investment strategies, particularly as it relates to impact investing. Findings from the survey will be released in a report available to the public, and respondents will receive priority access to the publication. For more information on the GIIN’s new efforts to engage faith-based investors, please contact Katrina Ngo, Senior Manager at kngo@thegiin.org.

SIILK Mentorship Program | Intentional Endowments Network

  • The newly launched SIILK Network Mentorship Program was designed to connect current students with experts from the sustainable investing industry, with the ultimate goal of creating a more diverse pipeline of finance professionals with a solid grasp on sustainable investing. If you are a current professional at an IEN member institution working in any area of the sustainable investing industry, please consider signing up to be a mentor, and if you are a current graduate or undergraduate student interested in being paired with a mentor who will provide career and/or project-based support, please consider signing up to be a mentee.
  • This scholarship was started and is coordinated by a group of First Affirmative Financial Network emeriti and longtime affiliates to bring young people to The SRI Conference. Applications will be accepted from April 1st through July 8th, 2019. Winners will be announced in late September. For questions or additional information on this program, please contact SRIscholarship15@gmail.com, and to apply, follow the link above.
 

 

New Resources & Reports

Global Sustainable Investment Review 2018 | Global Sustainable Investment Alliance

  • This fourth annual report from US SIF and its global counterparts summarizes the state of sustainable investing worldwide. Sustainable investing assets in the five major markets - Europe, the US, Canada, Japan, and Australia and New Zealand - stood at $30.7 trillion at the start of 2018, a 34 percent increase in two years. In all the regions except Europe, sustainable investing’s market share has also grown. Responsible investment now commands a sizable share of professionally managed assets in each region, ranging from 18 percent in Japan to 63 percent in Australia and New Zealand.

Fundamentals of Sustainable Investment: A Guide For Financial Advisors | Money Management Institute and The Investment Integration Project

  • MMI and TIIP are pleased to introduce a new guide to help financial advisors effectively integrate sustainable investing into their practices. The report outlines a practical four-step process for how financial advisors can talk with their clients about sustainable investment. It addresses pervasive industry myths about sustainable investing, disentangles the complicated web of vocabulary used to describe the approach, and provides practical recommendations on how to help clients reach their sustainable investing goals.

The Role of Investors in Supporting Better Corporate ESG Performance | Ceres

  • Investors and their membership organizations have played an active role in shaping corporate behavior on ESG issues, but there is still a lack of comprehensive information about what outcomes can be expected from various investor influence strategies such as dialogues with company management, shareholder proposals and proxy voting, divestment and public policy engagement. Ceres and EDF, with the support of KKS Advisors, undertook a comprehensive review of the literature and a series of in-depth interviews with investors and sustainability practitioners. This report identifies the key impacts of investor influence strategies and proposes a framework for understanding the drivers of successful investor engagement efforts.
Archived EU Action Plan Articles l Responsible Investor
  • The EU’s Action Plan on Financing Sustainable Growth is the biggest public intervention the financial markets have ever seen when it comes to ESG and responsible investment. In this public archive of RI articles, you can read in-depth analysis on how it will impact institutional investors and other stakeholders across the globe.

Investing in our Future: How Charities Can Lead the Way in Responsible Investment | ShareAction and Charities Responsible Investment Network

  • This paper guides charity investors through the responsible investment landscape and provides tools to develop a policy to ensure their money is working for the world they want to see.

Sizing the Impact Investing Market | Global Impact Investing Network

  • This whitepaper presents the first rigorous analysis and estimate of the size of the impact investing market. It estimates that over 1,340 organizations currently manage USD 502 billion in impact investing assets worldwide. This research also underscores the diversity of the market, capturing data from many types of investors — from family offices to foundations to banks to pension funds — who are based in every region of the world and investing worldwide.

Core Characteristics of Impact Investing | Global Impact Investing Network

  • Building on the GIIN’s existing definitions of impact investing, this new Core Characteristics 2-pager equips investors with: A list of the practices that will define the credibility of their impact investing approach in the market; Reference points for considering the quality and credibility of a potential investment partner’s impact investing approach.
 

 

 

 

Sustainable Investing By Institutional Asset Owners

CalSTRS Expanding Green Investment Efforts | Chief Investment Officer

  • The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) is beginning a new phase of its $2.5 billion program to invest in the stock of companies with low carbon emissions while also monitoring its external equity managers to see that they are incorporating sustainability factors in making investment decisions. While investment officials of the $226.5 billion pension system, the second-largest by asset size in the US, say they are doing their part, they offer a sobering assessment of the world’s progress in meeting the goals of the global Paris Agreement.

The Church Pension Fund Invests $40 million in Funds Focused on Clean Energy Infrastructure Projects | Episcopal News Service

  • The Church Pension Fund (CPF), a financial services organization that serves the Episcopal Church, announced that it invested $40 million in the New Energy Capital Infrastructure Credit Fund II, LP .CPF’s SRI focuses on investments that offer attractive risk-adjusted returns and also have a positive social impact. CPF currently has socially responsible investments in 25 countries. CPF’s SRI-related investments focus on economically targeted initiatives (urban redevelopment, affordable housing, sustainable agriculture, and microfinance) and environmentally responsible programs (sustainable forestry, clean technology, and green buildings).

Investors See Top for Oil Drillers in Move by $1 Trillion Fund | Bloomberg

  • When Norway moved forward with a plan to divest from as many as 150 oil explorers earlier this month, thousands of investors that follow its lead saw a clear signal: The days for oil drillers are numbered. “Having such a large institutional investor that clearly knows the energy industry well make this choice gives you some cover,” said Elizabeth Levy, a senior vice president at Trillium Asset Management, a $2.5 billion responsible investment firm in Boston.

Oil-rich Sovereign Funds Look to Renewables Alongside Fossil Fuels | CNBC

  • Sovereign wealth funds from oil-rich countries in the Middle East are moving to diversify into renewable energy, pushed by regulators and pledges on climate change, but are stopping short of following Norway in shedding some oil and gas investments.
 

 

Sustainable, Responsible, Impact & ESG Investing

Major New UN Report Calls for Overhaul of Global Financial System | Georgia Today

  • Sixty-plus international organizations, led by the UN and including the IMF, the World Bank, and World Trade Organization, jointly sounded the alarm in a new report, warning that unless national and international financial systems are revamped, the world’s governments will fail to keep their promises on such critical issues as combatting climate change and eradicating poverty by 2030. The 2019 Financing for Sustainable Development Report did find some good news: investment has gained strength in some countries and interest in sustainable investing is growing, with 75 percent of individual investors showing interest in how their investments affect the world.  

5 Things All Investors Can Learn From Sustainable Investing | ThinkAdvisor

  • Summarizes key lessons including that nonfinancial factors provide signals about future financial performance; climate change is a disruptive force; determining the ESG merits of a company is far from easy; shareholder advocacy can make a difference; and it is important to be a skeptical buyer.

From SRI to ESG, values-aligned investing has many names. Let’s decode the lingo | CNBC

  • Values-aligned investing is called by many different names, which are commonly misused or misunderstood by investors. This basic overview decodes the lingo to make this type of investing more accessible to advisors and investors alike, including definitions for ESG, SRI, Impact Investing, Sustainable Investing, Green Investing, Mission-Driven (or -Related) Investing, and Ethical (or Values-Based) Investing.

Sustainability And Your 401(k): Build The Future As You Save For The Future | Seeking Alpha

  • According to BlackRock's 2019 DC Pulse Survey, 62% of people currently saving in their workplace retirement plan say that it's important to have investing options that support environmental and social causes they care about - up from 49% a year ago.

Benchmarking Ability Shouldn’t Hinder DC Plan Adoption of ESG Investments | Planadvisor

  • There are obstacles to good comparisons for ESG investments, but a white paper from Strategic Benefit Services argues that ESG issues can have a material impact on a company’s performance via reputational, operational, and financial risks or via commercial opportunities (such as clean technology innovations to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy). The paper points to “a growing body of research” that suggests companies with a holistic consideration of ESG measures have better long-term financial outcomes and may provide more opportunities for profitable investing endeavors.

CRE Companies Mind Their ESGs | Corporate Property Executive

  • The top commercial real estate developers, owners and managers are embracing the ESG trend with quantifiable initiatives and dedicated staff that make their companies and portfolios more responsible, sustainable, resilient, and profitable–and more attractive for institutional capital.

Socially Responsible Investing Has A Politics Problem | Forbes

  • This piece discusses how socially conscious investing can be polarizing, and argues that something so innately complex as socially responsible investing deserves a far deeper look from all sides than politicization allows, which means reasonable proponents must work even more intently on communicating its important distinctions that matter most to every investor.

Senate Panel Calls for More Scrutiny of ESG Investing | Pensions & Investments

  • Institutional investors, index fund managers and proxy advisory firms applying ESG principles to investments came under scrutiny during a hearing held by the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. The committee asked how ESG shareholder proposals impact retail investors, and whether those proposals increase investors’ returns. In the 2018 proxy season, ESG proposals were the largest category of shareholder proposals on proxy ballots, with 15% climate related and 14% related to political contributions.

Ethical Investing Grows | FT Adviser

  • Survey of the growth and development of the field of ethical and ESG investing from the UK perspective.
 

 

Shareholder Engagement

(Listen) Shell Oil Says It Will Quit a Lobbying Group That Opposes Global Climate Goals | PRI

  • Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Tuesday became the first major oil and gas company to announce plans to leave a leading US refining lobby due to disagreement on climate policies, citing its support for the goals of the Paris climate agreement. In its first review of its association with 19 key industry groups, Shell said it had found "material misalignment" over climate policy with the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, and would quit the body in 2020. The review is part of Shell's drive to increase transparency and show investors it is in line with the 2015 Paris climate agreement's goals to limit global warming by reducing carbon emissions to a net zero by the end of the century.

SEC Sides with Exxon by Blocking Major Climate Vote | CNN

  • ExxonMobil has dodged a climate change shareholder vote — with some help from the SEC. The agency granted Exxon's request to block a shareholder resolution that would have urged the oil behemoth to adopt and disclose greenhouse gas emissions targets on its business and products in line with the Paris climate accord. The SEC ruled that the nonbinding proposal, which was backed by investors with $9.5 trillion in assets, would "micromanage" Exxon by seeking to impose "specific methods for implementing complex policies" in place of managerial judgment. Backers of the proposal, including the New York State pension, vowed to keep fighting for change at Exxon and other oil companies.

Hermes: Five Misconceptions of Company Engagement | IR Magazine

  • The role of an investor in addressing and improving a company’s environmental and social impact through engagement is being increasingly recognized. This investor engagement role remains a young phenomenon for most and therefore many myths exist around approaches to engagement and a company’s willingness to change. Here, Will Pomroy, lead engager of the Hermes SDG Engagement Equity Fund, puts to bed five misconceptions.

Shareholders Press Companies Harder On Human Rights | Financial Advisor

  • Proxy season is underway, in which companies face their shareholders and their concerns on social issues, and there has been a surge in human rights proposals aimed at such issues as immigration rights and detention, child sexual exploitation, hate speech and privacy. As of mid-February, 44 shareholder resolutions on human rights had been filed and 33 were pending for votes, according to Proxy Preview 2019, a joint publication from As You Sow, the Sustainable Investments Institute and Proxy Impact.

Amazon’s Reach Reflected in Record Advocacy from Shareholders | Bloomberg Law

  • Amazon.com Inc. has attracted the most shareholder proposals of any U.S. company this year, on topics from food waste and facial recognition technology to the environmental effects of warehouses and its headquarters’ impact on local housing. The 15 shareholder proposals from Amazon’s employees and investors reflect the company’s growing business footprint and the increased scrutiny from policymakers and the public.

Pernod Ricard Refocuses Business and Marketing on Sustainability: ‘Investors are Asking for It’ | The Drum

  • Citing investor pressuring, including from the beverage company’s fourth-largest investor, Blackrock, the company announced new goals include developing packaging that is 100% recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025, implementing a gender balanced management team by 2030 and reducing the overall intensity of its carbon footprint by 50% by 2030.

 

 

 

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Kresge Pledges to Place One-Quarter of Assets with Women, Minority Firms by 2025 | Crain’s Detroit Business

  • Kresge Foundation will place roughly $462.5 million under management of women- and minority-owned firms by 2025. Currently about 15 percent of its $1.85 billion in domestic assets are managed by such firms. The move is meant to spur other foundations and other groups investing significant assets to follow suit.

“Lack Of Diversity”: The Changing Face Of VC | Value Walk

  • Venture capital exists to help aspiring founders pursue their ideas, but it often results in an unequal playing field when investors look only for ideas that already have financial support. When men with money hold all the cards, they frequently fund companies run by other successful men. It’s part of the ongoing problem with the VC scene. This piece explores how the field is changing.

This Bias Training Changes How Angel Investors Think | Next City

  • Profiles the work of Pipeline Angels, founded in 2011 by Natalia Oberti Noguera, which is aiming to change angel investing by “creating capital for women and nonbinary femme social entrepreneurs” and getting investors to rethink where they put their money.
 

 

 

 

Gender Lens Investing

Two Dozen Major Banking, Tech, Retail, Health/Pharma Corporations Receive “F” on 2019 Gender Pay Scorecard | Business Wire

  • A new Arjuna Capital/Proxy Impact report ranking 46 of the world’s largest companies on gender and racial pay equity hands out an “A” to only one company: Citigroup. A failing grade of “F” is awarded to half (23) of the total group of companies, including Goldman Sachs, Oracle, McDonalds, Walmart, and Colgate. The second annual “Gender Pay Scorecard” (GPS) report, published by Arjuna Capital and Proxy Impact, takes a quantitative accounting of current disclosures and goals to help investors navigate best practices on pay equity.

Investing with Equal Pay in Mind May Be More Difficult Than You Think | CNBC

  • Women earn just 80 cents for every dollar a man makes, and closing that gap could take time. Investors who are concerned about equal pay may want to consider certain gender and diversity funds that are making this issue a priority. When selecting investments, be sure to keep in mind that how these funds advocate for these issues, and how successful certain proposals are, can vary widely.

Fearless Girl Sponsor State Street Not So Fierce in Proxy Votes | ThinkAdvisor

  • Morningstar studied the proxy voting history of gender-focused funds (using board diversity and gender equity in the workplace as key investment metrics), and found that their support for gender-focused shareholder resolutions was anything but uniform. While the Pax Ellevate, Glenmede and Calvert funds voted 100% in favor of the gender-focused shareholder proxies that came before them, State Street supported just 20% of such resolutions.
 

 

Community Impact Investing

What You Need to Know About Opportunity Zones | Forbes

  • The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA,) known for creating Opportunity Zones, is often celebrated for its potential to move billions of dollars into low-income communities. However, there remains an open question as to whether this program will ultimately serve to add value, or extract values, from these communities. Simply understanding the mechanisms of OZs creates a major barrier to entry for more socially-minded investors. This interview with Markeze Bryant of Acumen America aims to unpack some of the mystery.

Climate Adaptation Shouldn’t Fuel Inequitable Displacement | NRDC

  • Some Americans face a greater risk of being negatively affected not only by climate change, itself, but by displacement, redevelopment, and gentrification that can happen after climate-fueled disasters or as a result of climate adaptation activities. Because of this, it’s imperative that climate adaptation measures and reconstruction efforts after extreme weather are designed to include low-income and communities of color and bolster them against future climate, social, and economic hazards.
 

 

 

 

Investment Firm News

TIAA Releases Updated Policy Statement on Responsible Investing | Business Wire

  • TIAA released a newly revised edition of the TIAA Policy Statement on Responsible Investing, last updated in 2011. TIAA and Nuveen, which is responsible for managing TIAA’s assets and executing the Policy on behalf of its parent, have significantly advanced a wide range of responsible investing activities, including the recognition that material ESG issues have increasing investment relevance across asset classes. The redesigned Policy takes a more holistic approach to responsible investing by identifying the interconnections between ESG issues and their impact on stakeholders and encouraging companies to consider the impact of their operations on a broader set of stakeholders beyond just shareholders, including customers, employees, suppliers and the larger community.

Bank of America Commits $300 Billion by 2030 to Low-Carbon, Sustainable Business | BusinessWire

  • Bank of America announces it will mobilize an additional $300 billion in capital by 2030 through its Environmental Business Initiative. This third commitment increases the company’s investment in low-carbon business activities as part of its focus on deploying capital for responsible, sustainable growth. Through lending, investing, capital raising, advisory services and developing financing solutions, this new commitment will drive innovation and help to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, sustainable economy. The $300 billion goal brings Bank of America’s total commitment to more than $445 billion since 2007

Investors Underappreciate Climate-Related Risks in Their Portfolios – BlackRock Report | Associated Press

  • While the physical manifestations of climate change are clear, including rising sea levels, and more intense hurricanes, wildfires and droughts, how investors incorporate these risks into their analysis is not. The report, “Getting physical: Scenario analysis for assessing climate risks” uses new tools and data to articulate the potential impact on different U.S. asset classes, marking an important next step as investors increasingly recognize the importance of integrating climate-related risk factors in the investment process.

Advisors & Partners joins UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment | Opalesque

  • Alternative assets specialist Advisors & Partners announced that it has become a signatory of the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, joining more than 2,300 other institutions around the world that have publicly demonstrated their commitment to responsible investment. PRI is recognised as the leading global network for investors and asset owners from over 50 countries representing approximately US$82 trillion in assets.
 

 

Climate Risk, Science, and Regulation

5 Youth-Led Climate Justice Groups Helping to Save the Environment | Teen Vogue

  • Teen Vogue spoke with five youth-led climate justice groups for a glimpse into the many ways young people can get involved. This piece profiles the work of SustainUS, the young people leading lawsuits in the US and Canada in defense of the climate, Uplift, the student-led divestment movement, and Sunrise.

Wall Street Embraces Weather Risk in New Era of Storms | Bloomberg

  • As global warming makes extreme weather more common, meteorologists have become the high priests of finance, mitigating uncertainty and boosting risk-related profits. About one-third of the U.S.’s $18 trillion gross national product is generated by industries vulnerable to changes in the weather.

Climate Change Will Expose More People to Risk of Mosquito-borne Disease | University of Florida News

  • Locales where tropical disease are currently unknown – Canada and parts of Northern Europe, for instance – will become prime real estate for the yellow fever mosquito (Aedes aegypti) and the tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus). That means government planners and public health officials in those countries who are unaccustomed to dealing with such crises need to start preparing now in order to protect their populations from future massive disease outbreaks, said Sadie Ryan, a University of Florida associate professor of medical geography and lead author of the study published today in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases.

How Climate Change Is Fuelling the U.S. Border Crisis | The New Yorker

  • In-depth look at how climate change is deepening the extreme poverty driving migration.

Global briefing: Are coal's prospects going up in smoke? | Business Green

  • The number of coal-fired power plants under construction around the world fell sharply in 2018, according to a new report which has raised hopes that the tide could be turning on coal power. The paper, released by Global Energy Monitor, Greenpeace India, and the Sierra Club, reported a 20 per cent drop in newly completed coal plants in 2018, a 39 per cent drop in new construction starts, and a 24 per cent fall in the number of plants in pre-construction. Meanwhile, coal plants in developed countries continue to be retired at a record pace

“Perceptions” about Oil or Demand Realities? | Council on Foreign Relations

  • Explores claims that projections of declining future oil demand are based more on perception than reality, and argues that a combination of rapid technological disruption and shifting geopolitics has the potential to adjust the trajectory for oil demand, potentially downwards, but also, without strong policy intervention, possibly upwards. That is creating great uncertainty for investment in the oil sector.

A Low-Carbon Belt and Road | Project Syndicate

  • China’s Belt and Road Initiative is set to spur a sharp acceleration in GDP growth and development across the 60-plus participating economies. In order to ensure that BRI-related infrastructure projects don't also undermine global climate action, meaningful steps must urgently be taken to reduce their carbon footprint.

Brazilian Beef Linked to Deforestation May Re-enter U.S. Market | Chain Reaction Research

  • The United States, the largest beef consumer in the world, is accelerating a process to reopen beef imports from Brazil, the world’s largest beef exporter. Despite the favorable political and trading environment for the beef sector, increased deforestation could lead to financial, reputation, and market access risks for companies and their investors.
 
 

 

General Higher Education Endowment News

(Watch) How the Ivy League Stays So Rich: College Endowments | CNBC

  • Video report on the history, role, and management of college endowments. Includes the questions raised by students and lawmakers, as well as the influence of endowments on other investors’ strategies.

State Eyes Private Endowments for New Tax | Columbia Daily Tribune

  • State Sen. Bill Eigel, R-Weldon Spring, squared off Tuesday with two Democratic colleagues on the Senate Ways and Means Committee over a proposed tax on private university endowments. Eigel, vice-chairman of the committee, is pushing a bill to tax endowments worth $400 million or more at private universities with enrollments of at least 10,000 students. Only two schools — St. Louis University and Washington University — fit that category. If enacted, the $158.9 million in revenue would be used to offset most of a a cut in the top income tax rate estimated to reduce state revenues by $185 million. State Sens. Lauren Arthur, D-Kansas City, and Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis, told Eigel during the hearing the bill would stifle innovation at Missouri’s private universities.

Following the Trends: Endowment Investing in Private Equity | JD Supra

  • Overall, endowment investors continue to look at private equity investing with general optimism. Endowments are becoming increasingly sophisticated and engaged with managers and, as a result, managers have demonstrated a willingness to accommodate and develop products and options that appeal to endowments. When evaluating new alternative investments, endowments should consider pursuing the special terms and rights that are increasingly commonplace in the market and could enhance and protect their investments in the long run.
 

 

 

 

General Higher Education Sustainability News

University Impact Rankings 2019 | Times Higher Education

  • Released this week, the Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings are the only global performance tables that assess universities against the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The rankings use carefully calibrated indicators to provide comprehensive and balanced comparisons across three broad areas: research, outreach, and stewardship. This first edition includes more than 450 universities from 76 countries.

(Watch) University of Hawaii Renews Focus on Sustainability and Resilience Initiative | University of Hawaii News

  • At the March 28 University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents meeting, President David Lassner unveiled the renewal of the UH System’s sustainability and resilience initiative with a video highlighting UH’s dedication to the issue. The five-minute video was the result of more than five months of interviews and filming with key UH faculty and administrators. They were involved in different and diverse facets of sustainability and resilience research, curriculum, operations and community engagement, and deep cultural connections.
 

 

Fossil Fuel Divestment

Why Divestment Won’t Affect Your Financial Aid | Mac Daily

  • This student opinion piece from Macalaster College argues that, given the structure of Macalester’s endowment, the private oil and gas partnerships and the nature of the proposed moratorium, replacing the private partnerships with non-fossil fuel investments would not significantly affect the provision of financial aid. Approximately $40 million of the College $740 million endowment in private oil and gas partnerships.

Should Duke University Divest from Fossil Fuels? | The Chronicle

  • In light of a recent push encouraging Duke to divest from fossil fuels, a faculty panel gathered to discuss the issue. Duke Climate Coalition—a student organization that has pushed for divestment—hosted the panel, where faculty shared their mixed opinions about the responsibilities of the government, corporations and general public to help mitigate climate change. Duke’s Advisory Committee on Investment Responsibility is expected to make a recommendation about divestment this semester.

Harvard Faculty Demand Bacow Host Forum on Divestment | Harvard Crimson

  • Members of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences called on University President Lawrence S. Bacow to lead a Faculty discussion on Harvard’s fossil fuel investments, citing “widespread, deep, and reasonable disagreement” with Bacow’s response to the issue. Bacow responded that he would be “happy” to fulfill the professors’ request and would see if he could include a member of the Corporation in the discussions. He did not commit to any changes in investment decisions.

Divestment Activists Confront Swensen | Yale Daily News

  • As Yale Chief Investments Officer David Swensen gave a talk on Tuesday, members of the Endowment Justice Coalition directly confronted Swensen for the first time ever, requesting a response to their demands for fossil fuel and Puerto Rican debt divestment. Their query was met with silence.

It’s Time for the University of Texas System to Divest from Fossil Fuels | Daily Texan

  • This student opinion piece makes the case for divestment from fossil fuels by the University of Texas system’s $31 billion endowment, the second-largest in the U.S. at the end of 2018.

Georgetown University Fossil Free Alters Full Divestment Proposal After CISR Meeting | The Hoya

  • GU Fossil Free released a memo detailing its five-year plan for the university to divest from fossil fuel companies following a meeting with the university’s Committee on Investments and Social Responsibility, a group of university representatives charged with amending Georgetown’s investment practices. It provides a detailed plan for how CISR can achieve GUFF’s goal of complete divestment from fossil fuel companies by 2024.
 

 

Calendar of Upcoming Events

IEN Events:

Student Conference for Corporate Responsibility l Yale's Dwight Hall SRI Fund and The Intentional Endowments Network, April 13-14, 2019, New Haven, CT 

HBCU Impact Investment Summit | HBCU Green Fund and The Intentional Endowments Network, April 17, 2019, Durham, North Carolina

Intentionally Designed Endowment Roundtable at Total Impact Philadelphia | May 2, 2019, 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. ET, Philadelphia, PA

Community Impact Investing Roundtable 2019 | Intentional Endowments Network, September 6, 2019, Berkeley, CA

Other Events:

Impact Investing: Achieving Financial Returns While Doing Good | Brookings Institution, April 8, 2019, 10:30am-12pm EDT, Washington, DC and webcast

5th Annual Responsible Investing Summit l Financial Research Associates, April 9-10, 2019, New York, NY

Global Business Forum | Resource Sustainability: Challenges and Opportunities for Global Business | Freshfields and Columbia University’s Richard Paul Richman Center for Business, Law, and Public Policy, April 10, 2019, New York

Why Investors Are Embracing Opportunities in Sustainable Food & Ag | CleanTechIQ and Impax Asset Management, April 10, 2019, 11:00-11:50am EDT, webinar

ESG Asset Owners Summit | CFA Society Washington DC, April 11, 2019, Washington, DC

Fundamentals of the Opportunity Finance Industry/Certificate in Community Development Finance Course l  Center for Impact Finance at the University of New Hampshire & Opportunity Finance Network, April 10-12, 2019, Durham, NC

National Conference on Trusteeship | Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, April 12-14, 2019, Orlando, FL

You Have Deforestation in Your Supply Chain: What Now? | Ceres, April 18, 2019 9:30-10:30 EDT, webinar

Total Impact Philadelphia 2019 l Total Impact, May 1-2, 2019, Philadelphia, PA 

American Climate Leadership Summit 2019 | May 1-2, 2019, Washington, DC

Davos on the Delta l iSelect Fund, May 14-15, 2019, Memphis, TN

9th Annual Conference: New Challenges New Opportunities | US SIF, June 10-12, 2019, Minneapolis, MN

2nd Annual Advisors Forum | Confluence Philanthropy, June 24-25, 2019, San Francisco, CA

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