ESG in Emerging Markets and Beyond: Where Is the Alpha?

It isn’t a surprise that the world’s biggest active funds have relatively poor ESG rankings. While this could very well change, given the current lack of interest in ESG factors, any shift would likely result from end investor demand rather than a systematic investing approach. The who’s who of signatories to the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) of the United Nations (UN) confirms a trend: The world’s biggest government funds, perhaps supported by direct community interest, are at the forefront when it comes to incorporating ESG considerations in investing. While other investing concepts — value investing, for example — have attracted devoted followers for decades, socially responsible investing (SRI) has failed to generate a similar level of idea- and action-driven momentum from the investment community.

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