96. Why social issues have been wrongly ignored by investors

ESG has become a more prominent part of the fund management industry over the past couple of years, but the focus has really been on the E (environment) and G (governance). In this podcast, Katherine Kroll, senior sustainable investing specialist at Brown Advisory, talks to us about the S: social issues. She tells us why they have been overlooked, why it’s important that both society and investors think more about how company action can proliferate racism and environmental injustice, and why diversity and inclusion should be part of every investment process.
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Brown Advisory has a 200-year investment heritage and three decades of sustainable investing experience. It believes that the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic and the powerful reaction of society against police violence have developed in a highly interrelated matter in 2020. “This is just one of many examples that demonstrate why E, S and G issues need to be evaluated in concert with each other, and not in isolation.”

Read more about Brown Advisory Global Leaders and Brown Advisory US Flexible Equity

What’s covered in this podcast:

  • What social issues are and why they have taken a back seat in investment processes [0:36]
  • Environmental injustice: how certain communities are disproportionately burdened by environmental contamination and health risks [2:35]
  • How Generation Z is helping bring social issues to the fore [5:17]
  • How Brown Advisory is including social issues in its investment processes [6:36]
  • Why data privacy and AI ethics are central to an investment universe [7:53]
  • How representation and diversity in companies and governments is needed to get social issues right [10:44]
The views of the author and any people interviewed are their own and do not constitute financial advice. However the knowledge that professional analysts have analysed a fund or trust in depth before assigning them a rating can be a valuable additional filter for anyone looking to make their own decisions. Before you make any investment decision make sure you’re comfortable and fully understand the risks. If you invest in fund or trust make sure you know what specific risks they’re exposed to. Past performance is not a reliable guide to future returns. Remember all investments can fall in value as well as rise, so you could make a loss.

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