NEW REPORT: Igniting Impact in Global Public Equities

We are excited to share our third annual Engagement Impact Report, Igniting Impact in Global Public Equities, where we detail the outcomes of our global engagement efforts in 2018 as well as some of our three-year cumulative impacts. It is a source of pride that over a three-year cycle we have conducted over 840 engagements and created 147 measurable impacts.

In 2018, we achieved 43 measurable improvements or commitments in corporate polices, processes, or products. Many of these were achieved under our initiatives: (1) Banking on a Low Carbon Future and (2) Eco-Efficiency. Industrial gases giant, Air Liquide committed to developing new energy efficiency goals and the Equator Principles Association moved to improve its performance standards on Indigenous Peoples’ rights – to name just two.

As detailed in this report our work in 2018 includes:

  • Engaging with portfolio companies through sustained dialogue: Both directly and through proxy voting to improve performance on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors.
  • Conducting primary research and benchmarking corporate practices: To inform our engagement approach under our Banking on a Low Carbon Future and Eco-Efficiency initiatives.
  • Leading global collaborations: Mobilizing coalitions of investors to amplify our voice and impact.
  • Integrating ESG issues into all investment decision making: We received the top rating (A+), for the fourth consecutive year, on our governance & strategy from the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).
  • Advocating for progressive public policies to support responsible investment: Including in 2018 areas such as gun violence, divestment from private prisons, and more standardized environmental disclosure.
  • Investing in thought leadership: Including co-convening an investor dialogue in Tokyo focusing on energy policy and the low carbon transition.
  • Intentionally focusing efforts in Asia and Emerging Markets: Sustained dialogue with more companies, including those based in China and Japan, and expanding our focus in the region beyond environmental issues to core labor and human rights considerations.

This is our third impact report. Engaging companies to improve their products, policies, or procedures is a long-term process, and it is a source of pride that over a three-year cycle we have conducted over 840 engagements and created 147 measurable impacts.

We are also proud that we walk our talk as a company. In 2018, Boston Common has retained its status as a Certified B Corporation, to use business as a force for good, and joined Real Impact Tracker’s Certified Community of Fund Managers. Real Impact Tracker estimates that only 7% of assets under management scored with their rating system would meet their certification threshold. As a women-led and majority employee-owned firm, promoting diversity is also integral to our beliefs and actions; women comprise 60% of our Board of Directors and Senior Management.

I hope this report gives you more insights into the broad scope of our work and leadership over the last three years. As we make plans for the next three-year engagement cycle, we welcome your input and feedback.

For more information, please feel free to contact Lauren Compere, Managing Director at lcompere@bostoncommonasset.com

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