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Sunday November 23rd 2014

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Business for Democracy and ASBC Lead Effort to Overturn Citizens United v. FEC

The Business for Democracy Campaign, which the American Sustainable Business Council is spearheading in partnership with Free Speech for People is tackling the compelling issue of corporate contributions to political campaigns.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. FEC decision on January 21, 2010 allows corporations to spend unlimited funds to support or oppose candidates for political office, overturning campaign finance laws in place for decades. The Business for Democracy campaign is an initiative of business leaders and their companies who believe this ruling is in direct conflict with American democratic principles and a serious threat to good government. The campaign supports the four members of the Supreme Court and the 80 percent of Americans who disagree with the decision (Washington Post poll, Feb. 17, 2010).

If you'd like your business to join this effort, you can sign the statement of support here or here.

Demographics to Re-shape a Mature Sector

UPCOMING EVENTS

UKSIF “The Kay Review – Interim Report”

When
Thursday 22 March

Who
John Kay

What
Professor John Kay will speak about the preliminary results of his review for the UK government of the effect of UK Equity Markets on the competitiveness of UK business.

Where
FTSE Group, 10 Upper Bank Street, London, E14 5JJ

To register please email UKSIF.

Responsible Investor & Responsible Research “ESG Asia 2012″

When
Tuesday 27 March, 08:00 to 18:00

Who
Asian asset owners, government agencies, stock exchanges and regulators, global asset managers, banks, ESG service providers and selected corporates.

What
ESG Asia 2012 will focus on how investors and asset owners can integrate ESG research and practices into their investment decision-making. It will highlight key sustainability risks and opportunities in Asia and major regulatory developments.

Where
Singapore Exchange, SGX Auditorium, SGX Centre 1, 2 Shenton Way, 068804 Singapore

For more information and to register please click here.

Gresham College “Philanthropy Then, Philanthropy Now”

When
Thursday 29 March, 18:00

Who
Julia Unwin

What
This lecture will outline the challenges of modern-day society and how they affect a charity’s ability to deliver its purpose, and discuss how a ‘Good Society’ could be built through the individual, community, market and state.

Where
Barnard’s Inn Hall, Holborn, City of London, London EC1N 2HH

For more information, please click here.

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LONDON ACCORD LATEST REPORTS

Since January, 18 new reports are now accessible on the London Accord, some of which are briefly presented here:

Bank of America Merrill Lynch – Demographics to Re-shape a Mature Sector
Ageing Baby Boomers with their focus on wealth and health maintenance are expected to exacerbate the current developed world trend towards austerity. The numbers in their 60s and 70s are expected to increase by 34%/46% respectively to a combined 18% of total population in 2020. The ageing Baby Boomers are expected to have a profound impact on retail channels and the housing market. Hispanics conversely are the key to youth for the US economy, with an average age of 27; they are forecast to focus on education and consumption and will offset some of the Baby Boomers retrenchment.
Credit Suisse in collaboration with Schwab Foundation – Investing for Impact: How Social Entrepreneurship is Redefining the Meaning of Return
Currently a growing number of investors and entrepreneurs are proactively investing capital in solutions designed to generate a positive social or environmental impact, while also having the potential for some financial return. Beyond investing in social enterprises other impact investment vehicles are rapidly evolving, ranging from impact bond structures to seed-stage investment forums. The field though is at an early stage development with a number of hurdles for investors to cross. The report’s aim is to offer investors and social entrepreneurs a better understanding of these complexities.
Credit Suisse – Transition to a Low-Carbon Economy: The Role of Banks
Climate change looks to have major economic impacts, representing significant substantial risks in terms of unknown exposure in banks’ balance sheets and also opportunities. The shift towards a low carbon economy is related to major investment needs. There are four key banking opportunities: mobilising new capital sources; developing new regulatory risk products; setting up distribution partnerships to develop energy efficiency markets; and seizing energy efficient opportunities for banks’ property portfolios. Since opportunities/risks will not be the same for all banks, a comprehensive assessment should take into account each bank’s business model and its potential leadership role in the decarbonisation space.
Deutsche Bank – 2011: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly
2011 has seen both progress and constraint in continuing the global transition towards cleaner energy sources. This has been reflected in the performance of the different asset classes in the clean energy space. Whereas cleantech public equities fared poorly, private equity/venture capital and infrastructure markets have continued to grow. Total investment in clean energy and energy efficiency markets was nearly $140billion Q1 through Q3 2011, compared to $103 billion over the same period 2010. While there may be some growth moderation in infrastructure markets in 2012, the forecast is for continued long-term growth in cleaner energy markets.
Generation Investment Management – Sustainable Capitalism
To address sustainability challenges a paradigm shift to Sustainable Capitalism is advocated: a framework that seeks to maximise long-term economic value creation by reforming markets to address real needs while considering all costs and stakeholders. The economic case for mainstreaming Sustainable Capitalism is made by highlighting the fact it does not represent a trade-off with profit maximisation but fosters long-term value creation. Key actions for immediate adoption are recommended that will accelerate the mainstreaming of Sustainable Capitalism by 2020.
the Initiative for Responsible Investment at Hardard University – Impact at Scale: Policy Innovation for Institutional Investment with Social and Environmental Benefit
mpact investment is investment with the intent to create measurable social or environmental benefit in addition to financial return. Policy and regulation can play an important role in unlocking more institutional investment capital for greater social and environmental impact. The different roles that policy can play in accelerating the development of impact investing practice and products are examined. Insight and case studies about the current practices of service providers and institutional asset owners are provided. An analytical framework is provided to stimulate dialogue amongst investors, policymakers, advocates and other stakeholders.
Inrate – Sustainability Matters – Health and Prevention: How Sustainable are Our Healthcare Systems?
Health expenditure is at a high level in numerous countries and is continuing to increase. Since it promotes longer-term growth and welfare, it tends to have positive effects on the economy. However, rising health expenditure can also be a sign of inefficiency and cause harm to other sectors of the economy. Since households are obliged to spend ever-increasing amounts on their healthcare, there is less of their budget left for other expenditures such as edu- cation or social security. Many economies are therefore trying to stem the growth of healthcare expenditure. From a corporate perspective, efficient healthcare systems are es- sential, as absence from work caused by illness or accidents is extremely costly for companies. The resources devoted to healthcare provision must therefore be used in the most targeted and efficient way possible. One appropriate solution to this question is prevention and the promotion of healthy lifestyles; these two issues were also the focus of the 64th global meeting of the WHO in May 2011.
Trucost – Dirty Feet: Portfolio Carbon
Focusing on one major ESG factor in South Africa, GHG emissions, SinCo presents analysis of Trucost research on the carbon footprints of major companies and investors, assessing the challenges faced of building businesses in a low-carbon, climate-resilient future in Africa’s biggest economy. Global best practice methodology is used in the analysis of FTSE/JSE 40 Index companies and Top-10 funds. There is a need for major JSE-listed companies to clearly articulate to shareholders, policymakers and regulators their plans and practices in managing their carbon footprint and ESG issues. There is also a clear case for comprehensive, mandatory company reporting on carbon.
To access the full list of reports displayed on the London Accord click here.

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