Wednesday 15 June 2022

This book sets out the issues that company boards face in the light of climate change and the wider set of factors that fall under the ESG banner, and provides useful advice for boards at all levels. It is clear that climate change, the drive to net zero, and the rapid rise of ESG investing creates many new problems for boards to consider and there is an urgent need to upskill boards to deal with them adequately. All of these factors are also in the context of a fundamental shift away from the shareholder primacy model of capitalism towards a broader model of stakeholder capitalism, the exact forms that this shift takes is not yet totally clear and there may be multiple models.

 

The book sets out the context and explores specific issues including amongst others; the SDGs, gender diversity; corruption; and managing responsibility in supply chains. As well as setting out the context of each of these the book provides useful examples of how to deal with them and recommendations for action.

 

My only criticism of the book is that it seems to assume all ESG investing is equally good, even though it is clear that there are degrees of ‘ESG washing’ and not all ESG investors or funds are applying truly rigorous standards. Having said this the direction of travel of the finance sector is clear and the shift towards ESG and impact investing is already having a massive impact on boards of companies of all sizes. As well as the requirements for larger companies to comply with regulations such as the Sustainable Finance Taxonomy, smaller companies are increasingly being asked by customers to demonstrate their ESG performance.

 

This book is a very useful guidance for board members getting to grips with these increasingly important issues and the work of Helle Bank Jorgensen through Competent Boards is to be commended.

 

At ep group we are impact led and working hard to integrate consideration of all of our impacts into our decision making. Because we believe in long-term stewardship and the need to re-adjust the relationship of capital to companies as part of the move towards a new form of stakeholder capitalism and enterprise design, we are transitioning to steward ownership. We will certainly use this book in increasing our knowledge and skills.

 

Dr. Steven Fawkes

 

Managing Partner

 

ep group

 

6th June 2022



Comments

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Dr Steven Fawkes

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