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Trium Sustainable Innovators launch think tank to advocate ESG best practice

The Trium Sustainable Innovators have launched the Leonie & Norman Institute, a new think tank focused on advocating ESG best practice within the asset management industry.

Harnessing the research that underlies the Trium Sustainable Innovators Fund range, the think tank serves as the strategy’s engagement arm. It focuses on both identifying best practices among companies that exhibit high standards in the application of environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria and engaging with other corporates to share these leading-edge approaches.

The core belief of the Leonie & Norman Institute is that engagement is critical to driving corporate change. It will work to raise company-specific concerns to management teams and make recommendations for the broader asset management industry. Based in London, the think tank will run a range of campaigns on specific ESG themes, with a particular focus on climate change, social issues and executive compensation.

Alongside the launch of the think tank, the Leonie & Norman Institute has published its inaugural research paper, which argues ambiguity around definitions of carbon neutrality and net zero must be addressed at COP26 to set corporate stakeholders on a clearer path to reducing emissions. The report also shows that transparency and comparability remain significant barriers to progress, with a wide range of reporting standards across different companies and jurisdictions.

The Leonie & Norman Institute also predicts that water emissions will be the next trend in the discourse around achieving net zero. The paper discusses how effective reuse of water represents a highly cost-effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and can help the planet prepare for water supply challenges as the impact of climate change deepens.

Raphael Pitoun, portfolio manager of the Trium Sustainable Innovators Funds, says: “Meaningful engagement from asset managers is absolutely vital to drive effective long-term corporate change. However, there is currently a wide range of approaches to engagement with little consistency across the sector. This is despite growing pressure from governments to position the financial sector at the heart of progress on climate change and other major ESG-related issues.

“We believe the Leonie & Norman Institute will play an important role in driving the change that is needed to improve the quality and consistency of engagement with businesses. It is an open ecosystem that will collaborate with a wide range of groups from NGOs and charities to asset managers and corporates. Only by bringing together the collective expertise and experiences of these different groups can we move towards an effective, future-proof approach across industries.”

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