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Responsible Investing Policy approved

The Queen’s Board of Trustees approved a new Responsible Investing Policy for the university during its meeting on Saturday, May 13.

The Responsible Investing Policy and corresponding procedures were unanimously approved by the board, replacing the March 2009 Statement on Responsible Investing.

“A new policy was necessary to ensure that Queen’s is consistent with institutional best practices in the area of responsible investing,” says Don Raymond, Chair of the Board of Trustees and former chair of the Board’s Investment Committee. “The new policy balances the overall goal of maximizing returns while also providing an avenue for members of the Queen’s community to make special requests, as we saw with the discussion on divestment from fossil fuels by the Principal’s Advisory Committee.”

The approval completes a nearly two-year process and builds upon recommendations made by the Principal’s Advisory Committee on Divestment: Fossil Fuels in its October 2015 final report. Following the release of the report feedback was sought from the Queen’s community to help inform the revisions.

The new policy sets the principles that govern responsible investing practices at the university, and recognizes that the university can make an impact through several means, highlighting shareholder engagement with corporations and through its core mission as an educational and research institution.

The new procedures provide a mechanism for the university to engage with its external investment managers on environmental, social, and governance factors, and outline criteria for consideration and a process for handling a special request that is received from the university community.

“This process has drawn valuable feedback and information and I would like to thank all of those who have expressed interest and devoted their time and expertise in creating a policy that meets the principles and needs of the university and the diverse stakeholders that make up the Queen’s community,” says Mr. Raymond, adding that the process received input from groups and individuals with a range of views, including Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change.

Visit the University Secretariat and Legal Counsel website to review  the procedure on External Investment Manager ESG Monitoring and the procedure on Special Requests.