Communicate Progress

Higher education endowments have a unique opportunity to lead on encouraging transparency in the financial industry and advancing the field of sustainable investing as they engage students and other stakeholders in a continuous learning process. Learning opportunities can also be tied back to the classroom, engaging students and faculty in carrying out research on real-world topics for endowment managers or running student-managed funds.

Sharing progress publicly on sustainable investment activities can signal to alumni, donors, students and faculty that the school fully embraces its mission and also provide ongoing education in this constantly evolving field.  

There are many ways that institutions can leverage these activities to enhance their sustainability leadership and attract students and donors.


1. Work with IEN to create a case study or share story at an IEN forum or roundtable


2. Share progress in an industry publication


3. Report progress on your website


4. Earn recognition for the school working with organizations with expertise in sustainability

  • STARS 

    • The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) manages the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS), a self-reporting system through which participating institutions receive a rating of Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum based on their sustainability programs across the institution.Rated institutions are featured in the annual Sustainable Campus Index, which highlights top performers and best practices.

      • STARS provides a framework for understanding sustainability in all sectors of higher education and enables comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements. 

      • Institutions can earn several points based on investment disclosure, having a committee on investor responsibility, and implementing sustainable investing activities.

      • Read more about the program and how to participate.

  • PRI

  • SDG Accord

    • The Accord is a commitment learning institutions are making to one another to do more to deliver the goals, to annually report on each signatory's progress, and to do so in ways which share the learning with each other both nationally and internationally. An objective is that sector SDG reporting metrics will be presented at the annual UN High Level Political Forum. 

  • Endowment Watch

    • Organized by the Diverse Asset Mangers Initiative, this platform allows university endowments to report on the demographics of their fund managers to encourage more transparency in who exactly is managing endowment assets. 

5. Join Investor Initiatives

Join investor groups and initiatives to access resources, learn from experts and peers, and signal to stakeholders that the institution is engaged in this process. Membership and participation in these various initiatives are complementary and not mutually exclusive. Click here to become a Member of IEN or here for a list of relevant initiatives.



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