Agenda - Day 1
- Getting us to net zero: The role of pensions
- Taking climate and sustainability obligations seriously
- Role of green gilts
- What we are doing to drive forward change and mobilise investment
- Examining the inflows, assets and ESG funds available to institutional and retail investors
- Highlighting new thematic trends and fund types
- Understanding the impact of regulation on funds
- Exploring the Net Zero Asset Managers commitment to accelerate the transition towards global net zero emissions and ensure a just transition
Understand how investment impacts biodiversity and the actions needed to make an active contribution to safeguard the world's natural resources.
- What transformational steps are being taken to catalyse and commit to the systemic change needed to meet net zero transition goals?
- What are the challenges of getting to net zero? How are you managing engagement and risk of stranded assets?
- How are you performing and meeting on D&I targets?
- What demands and questions are being put on you by clients and how are you responding"
Stream 1: Fund Selectors
Most people will be familiar with the phrase, often echoed when an unexpected event causes chaos or disruption to the world in which the live. At these times, it is often seen to be proactive and positive to respond.
What exactly that response should be is open for debate and when the unexpected happens, it is rarely perceived to be wise or acceptable to be inactive.
However, in this session RLAM’s Head of Sustainable Investments, Mike Fox will warn against short-term ‘knee jerk’ reactions and argue it more prudent to observe and analyse before acting; to make well considered decisions over longer-term horizons.
Climate oriented investing is all about investing with an impact. A climate oriented allocation aims to support global efforts to put a curb on carbon emission. But what about risk? Companies with a heavy carbon footprint are likely to suffer from carbon price elevation, which is expected to take place in the next decades.
In this presentation, Vincent Denoiseux, Head of ETF Investment Strategy – Amundi ETF, Indexing and Smart Beta, will demonstrate how, with the help of state of the art carbon price models, an allocation to Paris Aligned Benchmarks can significantly improve the long term risk profile of equity portfolios.
The recent issuance of green gilts by the UK government has seen investors pour in. Why is this happening now, how are managers using green bonds in portfolios, and what due diligence should fund selectors undertake to assess climate thematic index solutions?
Stream 2: Financial Advisers
- Progress being made to help change our industry for the better
- What is next for Sustainable investing in the market?
- What should advisers prepare for?
- How can advisers help their clients make the right choices?
If you’re recommending sustainable portfolios to your clients, you should probably be practicing what you preach. Gillian Hepburn – Head of UK Intermediary Solutions at Schroder Investment Solutions will walk you through the Schroders ‘Sustainability Scorecard’ to help you see how sustainable your firm really is, and steps you can take to improve it.
In his talk Jai will note some practical and useful tips to consider to help you, your business and your team become more ethical, wherever you are in your business journey (without a Greggs vegan sausage roll in sight!).
Stream 3: Pension Professionals
Understanding your ESG responsibilities
As many schemes move to decarbonise their portfolios and have increasingly regulatory pressure to report on the impact their portfolio is having, private markets solutions can play an important role. They provide not only diversified long-term returns but can also deliver a positive environmental and social impact.
During the session, Jack will discuss the path to decarbonisation and some of the opportunities the different private markets asset classes have to contribute to addressing the climate challenge, as well as help to facilitate the transition to a more sustainable future.
With trillions of pounds of assets under management, pension schemes have the power to make a significant impact on the climate emergency. This impact is often best exercised through stewardship, but how can asset owners ensure they are exercising their power to create genuine ‘real world’ change? And how can they be sure that words are being translated into action? This session will bring together panellists to discuss the role of stewardship, what good looks like, and the actions that pension scheme asset owners can take to be better stewards.
EM corporates have, on average, lower ESG ratings and are less open to a constructive dialogue with their investors on sustainability than their developed market peers. That is no reason to give up on these companies. In fact, it could be a good reason to invest more efforts in engaging with them as we can make a real difference. Many innovative solutions providers are headquartered in EM, and we see exciting opportunities for impact investors in listed equities.
Stream 1: Fund Selectors
The positive performance correlation of gender diversity on corporate boards is arguably the most widely researched metric and compelling proof point in the responsible investing industry. As a new generation of diversity metrics becomes available, does the hypothesis that more diverse companies tend to show real performance differences still hold? Investors regularly advocate with companies for better performance on a range of strategic and operational diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) factors based on the belief that DEI underpins a more innovative corporate culture that maximizes talent retention and productivity. What are some of the ways in which DEI both supports and challenges culture? Is DEI actually a proxy for some other less measurable factor? And what are the emerging disclosure norms that could facilitate more accurate portfolio allocations with a focus on DEI?
Demand for sustainable investment solutions is increasing year on year and specifically, demand for climate solutions has never been higher. Daniel Bowie-MacDonald, Investment Specialist at abrdn, will discuss how and why you may want to invest in climate solutions companies and why a multi-asset approach may be a compelling option for a range of different investor types.
Stream 2: Financial Advisers
• What resources do you need to have in place to develop ESG capacity?
• What are the data considerations and needs?
• Demonstrating credentials and building narrative with clients?
• What worked and what needs to happen next?
When building a sustainable investment proposition, ensure that you take account of personal, local and global considerations. Sustainability is a global trend but you can do it in your own way.
Stream 3: Pensions Professionals
How a £2bn+ scheme has approached this? Where did they get it right and what lessons have been learnt for one of the fastest-growing companies in the retirement savings marketplace?
Exploring how asset managers are evolving their approaches to stewardship to become more targeted and outcomes focused.
Biodiversity loss needs urgently to be addressed and may pose a threat to humanity even bigger than climate change. The international community increasingly acknowledges this inconvenient truth, however, mitigation plans are in an early stage. How can institutional investors contribute today? Options for action from a practical perspective.
Impact Investing: beyond ESG Impact investing is one of the least understood but fastest-growing options across the sustainable investing spectrum. It offers an exciting opportunity to help address some of the world’s major social and environmental challenges while also offering the potential for attractive financial returns.
Impact approaches are currently seeing strong momentum across the market. We believe they deserve particular consideration from pension funds as they can both increase members’ engagement and benefit from the great intergenerational wealth transfer ahead. But, given the rapid growth in sustainable investing and the lack of common market standards, many investors are understandably concerned about ‘greenwashing’. In this session, we put the spotlight on impact investing, aiming to give you the key principles that can help you to navigate the impact investing universe and find authentic approaches that deliver on your needs.
Questions we will answer include:
- How do we define impact investing and where can you find impact investment opportunities?
- What about financial returns? How do you evaluate the positive and the negative effects of each investment considered?
- How exactly do you measure impact and demonstrate progress – and any alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals?
- Which asset class is better suited to impact investing: equities or bonds?
- How can you sift out the greenwashers?
As well as considering financial capital and natural and environmental capital, long term investors also need to consider human capital and social capital. The likes of COVID and Gen Z have brought factors like the ‘great resignation’ and desire to work for destination employers, and the consideration of customer preferences increasingly to the fore.
In an effort to integrate material ESG issues into investment processes, investors have faced challenges related to data analytics and reporting as well as measuring the real world impact of their investments. That’s now further compounded by the ESG implications of the Ukraine- Russia war. As part of sharing our perspectives on the above implications, we’ll discuss the merits of ESG and climate integration in index investments, including the debate on divestment vs engagement.
Don't miss the insightful thoughts of Sir Trevor McDonald, a legend and icon of news and current affairs. This is a unique opportunity to hear him in conversation with Declan Curry, as he shares his perspectives on the significant world events that have impacted our society, the role of today’s news in driving change of people and behaviour, and the lessons we can take forward as we manage uncertainty and risk in turbulent global times.