Posts Tagged: Governance (G)

The State of the Data: Challenges to Integrating ESG Factors into Investment Decisions

Introduction Today, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) data are helpful to investors — but not helpful enough.  Environmental information about greenhouse gas emissions has enabled investors to identify companies that seem vulnerable to a potential carbon tax, and has also highlighted companies that have materially improved energy efficiency.  Similarly, many companies have been reporting data… Read more »

Why “Attentiveness” Matters: A Cautionary Tale for Investors

Editor’s Note: The piece below by Uwe Gneiting, a Research and Policy Advisor for the Private Sector Department at Oxfam America, and originally published here on July 13, 2017, struck a chord with Cornerstone’s research team. In October 2016 we published Extractive Company Values, an in-depth report illustrating how mining companies’ “attentiveness” to material environmental… Read more »

“Governance and Impact” Journal Compilation, First Half of 2017

With this edition of The Cornerstone Journal of Sustainable Finance and Banking (JSFB) we’d like to ensure that everyone in the sustainable investing community is aware that we have shifted from a monthly publication schedule to an ongoing series of blog posts enabling us to provide more timely commentary on behalf of the Cornerstone network… Read more »

Governance and the Ungovernable: Implications of Blockchain Proliferation

Overview Theory and politics. The blockchain and related innovations represent a new and relatively complex set of potential investment opportunities. The technology has received significant attention from a range of individuals and institutions, from computer scientists to corporations to private equity groups. We outline the theory of the technology as well as the governance implications… Read more »

Finance of the Future

John Wilson was recently interviewed by Sea Change radio’s Alex Wise for his podcast. We discussed how managers balance trying to please dividend-hungry shareholders with keeping an eye on the future, how automation will affect the global economy, and how all of this is ultimately an issue of sustainability. Click below to hear the replay. John… Read more »

Making Their Voices Heard: Shareholders Vote for Greater Transparency on Climate Change

While reactions to the US withdrawal from the Paris accord may be dominating headlines, a no less remarkable development in climate change response is occurring at the annual shareholder meetings of US corporations. In a milestone for shareholder advocacy, a majority of shareholders voted in favor of proposals at four energy companies asking for greater… Read more »

Why the Choice Act Is a Threat to Corporate Stewardship

For over 40 years, some shareholders have been protecting the environment, improving working standards and increasing corporate accountability using a little-known but effective tool called a shareholder proposal. But now this tool is threatened by the legislative push to reform financial regulation. Shareholder proposals allow investors to put questions related to a company’s environmental, social… Read more »

Proxy Voting for Impact: A Conversation About Corporate Governance in 2017

Something we hear frequently at Cornerstone Capital Group is that you cannot invest for impact in the public markets. There is a sense that public companies like Apple, General Motors or Coca-Cola are too big, too well-established, too focused on short-term profitability perhaps, to have impact. In fact, nothing can be further from the truth…. Read more »

Partnering with Rutgers and the G&A Institute

21st Century executives and their teams need the skills, networks, and increased expertise to achieve important CSR, sustainability, environmental, social and community impact goals while delivering value to their organization, investors and other key stakeholders. The Rutgers Institute for Ethical Leadership, in partnership with the Governance & Accountability Institute, Inc., offers a two-day, deep dive… Read more »

Our Comments to the SEC on the CEO/Worker Pay Ratio Rule

Because our investor clients seek to invest for the long term, we have a strong interest in urging corporate disclosures that enable investors to evaluate risks and make decisions that will affect the long-term health of our clients’ portfolios. Our corporate clients believe that meaningful disclosure that communicates how they are managing environmental, social and governance matters helps them to attract long-term capital.

Extractive Company Values: Environmental & Social Issues as Indicators of Strategy Execution Potential

With a market cap of over US$6 trillion, the extractive sector encompasses over 5,000 companies. It provides raw materials for everything from energy creation to high-tech manufacturing to electronics. Even as the world starts to transition from greenhouse gas emitting commodities like oil and coal, natural resource extraction will remain essential. Smartphones and electric vehicles, for instance, require metals sourced from extractive operations around the world. Yet natural resource extraction is, by its very nature, environmentally destructive and socially disruptive — and managing the risks inherent in mining is of prime concern to extractive companies and the host countries in which they operate. Extractive companies’ success will be in part determined by their ability to position themselves for this future.

Evolving Lifecycles in an ESG Materiality Matrix

For most sectors, the likelihood of adverse ESG events and their potential financial impacts evolve through a lifecycle. ESG lifecycles determine the time it takes for a sustainability issue to become relevant to a sector as well as the magnitude of the financial impact. We believe the ability to anticipate ESG lifecycles can enhance the investment decision-making process.

To “B” or Not to “B”: The Power of Corporate Form

Corporate form has the power to effect significant and desperately needed change. Corporate form serves as the very backbone of our society, shaping the actions of the most powerful institutions of our time (corporations) and providing the functional framework for the behavior of virtually all men and women who work around the world. Therefore, I believe that corporate form can be a very effective extra‑governmental tool for solving the crises.

A Video Interview with BlackRock’s Edkins on “The Shareholder Alignment Frontier” (SAF)

We are pleased to share a recent video interview with Blackrock’s Michelle Edkins and Cornerstone’s John Wilson in which we discuss the value of the “Shareholder Alignment Frontier TM (SAF).” The SAF is a tool inside Cornerstone’s proprietary framework which was specifically developed to help companies make the business case for improved stakeholder relationships through shareholder engagement thus building value for the long term

A Voice in the Boardroom: Practical Guidance for Voting Proxies

“A Voice in the Boardroom” is written for organizations and individuals who want to use their voice as shareholders to influence companies, but are not sure how to get started. It is meant primarily for asset owners — endowments, foundations, family offices, individuals or others — who are long-term stewards of capital on behalf of themselves and others.

The Power of Responsibility – Making Sense of the UN Global Compact

The United Nations Global Compact is the world’s largest voluntary corporate responsibility initiative. Currently it has more than 8,000 business participants from more than 145 countries. Participants are required to support ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption.