Robeco Launches New SI Initiative, Expanding its Sustainable Investing IP

Published on: 25 August 2022
by KnowESG
Rotterdam Blick vom Euromast 03

Robeco announces the launch of its Sustainable Investing Open Access Initiative. In the first stage of this Open Access initiative, clients and a group of academics will receive free access to the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) scores of companies established by Robeco using its proprietary SDG framework through a portal.

In 2017, Robeco began developing its SDG Framework. Robeco can use the framework to quantify an investible company's contribution to the SDGs. 

One of the most challenging difficulties in sustainable investing is data quality. Robeco believes that the industry should work to improve data and establish standards. Robeco hopes to contribute to this through the SI Open Access Initiative.

Robeco's commitment to a more sustainable future includes making its intellectual property available to a broader audience to assist clients in making more informed sustainable decisions. 

Robeco actively invites data feedback and maintains an ongoing conversation with its stakeholders, who include academics, clients, and SI specialists. 

As a result, Robeco anticipates that this initiative will strengthen the data and methods even further. All of this is to contribute to and be a part of the transition to a more sustainable world. Robeco will later make additional SI data and IP available to a broader set of stakeholders.

Many of Robeco's client portfolios use the SDG framework. Some of the world's largest asset owners, such as UBS Global Wealth Management, BBVA AM, and pensioenfonds ING, are strong supporters of Robeco's SI Open Access initiative.

Victor Verberk, CIO, Fixed Income and Sustainability, said: 

"This initiative is right in line with our firm belief in a data and research-driven approach. We were among the first asset managers to construct an effective framework for mapping and measuring SDG contributions that can be applied across investment portfolios. Traditionally, asset managers tend to protect intellectual property and use it to add value to their proprietary investment processes. Yet the massive challenges our planet is facing require a different approach. We need to join forces to address these challenges properly. By opening up our SDG data to a broader audience, we aim to contribute to improving quality and standards-setting across the industry.”

Carola van Lamoen, Head of Sustainable Investing, said: 

“We consider this a landmark move which will bring the sustainable investing industry a step further. Granting clients and academics access to our SDG data and methodology is only the first step. With SDG data, clients can measure progress over time against sustainable objectives, steer on exposure to SDGs, and report on them. Robeco is a research-driven investor. We base our investment decisions on empirical research and believe that this also applies to sustainable investing. Furthermore, by publishing our SDG scores, we aim to enable academics to develop new insights. We, therefore, invite them to actively share their feedback on our SDG data and methodology.”

Source: Robeco

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