Ethical Investment

Sustainable Investment Policy Statement

Coventry University Group will not intentionally invest directly (or through collective funds) in arms companies and corporations complicit in the violation of international law. This includes organisations with high exposure to activities or substances which are potentially injurious to health (including alcohol and tobacco), that could destabilise community cohesion or threaten international stability.

Coventry University Group is committed to helping protect and preserve the global environment and in terms of environmental sustainability, does not invest directly in organisations that do not have policies to control and significantly reduce the risk of serious negative environmental impacts. Coventry University Group will redeem investments with funds that detrimentally impact on the environment.

Investments must not made in companies deriving income from fossil fuel extraction. A maximum limit of 10% of revenues will be applied to companies deriving revenues from fossil fuel activities. Fund Managers have an explicit mandate to exclude investments that would breach this limit in their portfolios. Investments from redeemed or maturing investments will only be reinvested into compliant investments.

The performance of funds against sustainability criteria is to be reviewed on a regular basis and further opportunities to enhance sustainability portfolios to be covered on fund review meetings. The ethical implications of medium-term or long-term investments will be assessed alongside commercial opportunities. Information is to be published on the ongoing performance of sustainable investment at Coventry University Group and engagement sought from relevant stakeholders to encourage feedback.

Where fund managers make investments on behalf of Coventry University Group they will be appointed to ensure they are operating consistently with the ethical and sustainable requirements of Coventry University Group.

In delivering upon our policy Coventry University Group:

Will publish a list of its investments as part of the annual reporting process to ensure open and transparent communication with its stakeholders. Learn more about our current investments and the following fund holdings: Barclays Multi Asset Funds Sustainable Medium to Low Portfolio and Barclays Multi Asset Funds Sustainable Moderate Portfolio, RL Sustainable Diversified Trust Fund Holdings and BNY Mellon Sustainable Real Return Fund.

Coventry University Group appoints Fund Managers to ensure that investments remain consistent with the values set out in the Treasury Management Policy.

Coventry University Group will aim to place all medium-term treasury investments in financial institutions whose investment values reflect those set out in the Coventry University Group’s Treasury Management Policy.

In October 2022, Coventry University Group formally committed to exclude fossil fuel extractor companies from investments within its treasury and investment policy to formalise its commitment that has been effective since it began investment activity in 2019.


Who is involved:

The Ethical Investment Working Group consisting of internal representation from Finance, Sustainability Teams, representation from academic staff from our Faculty of Business and Law as well as student representatives. The role of the group is to manage the delivery of the Policy, review progress on ethical investment within investment portfolios, incorporate stakeholder interest and sustainability requirements, consider risk and external factors that could impact on investment decisions, communicate and report on progress.

The group has engaged fund managers in our policy and ensuring their commitments match our own has been a priority for the group.

The Strategy, Finance and Resources Committee (SFRC) ensures the policy and our commitments are being delivered upon.

We encourage transparency and feedback, working with students to help us develop our policies and our approach to ethical investment.


Activities and building knowledge

Our Faculty of Business and Law wholly subscribes to the Principles for Responsible Management Education, this includes connecting ethical investment into our finance courses.

During 2022/ 23 the faculty organised three PRME sessions to empower students alongside academic, professional and managerial staff. These have included an awareness and refresher session for new and existing staff, a session on the new PRME Faculty Strategy and a session on how PRME is linked to ESD.

Other events during 2022/23 have included:

Green Week in March 2023 saw an Ethical Investment Forum with Coventry University Group Fund Managers being held. Three of our external investment fund managers ran workshops including responsible investment, three stage sustainability process and net zero sessions. The event was open to and organised by staff and students.

We also engaged students through our Ethical Finance workshops, run in partnership with ‘Students Organising for Sustainability’ the sessions were open to all undergraduate students, held during the Enhancing Futures programme in summer 2022.

The workshop also encouraged feedback on the Sustainable Investment Policy Statement and encouraged students to sign up to be part of an ongoing conversation on the development of this, be part of the Ethical Investment Working group and to continue to shape our policy and commitments.

Bringing together staff expertise, our fund managers and students is a model we will continue to build upon. This supplements our formal and informal curriculum activities.

We invite further feedback via: envteam.est@coventry.ac.uk

Where the university should and shouldn't invest - views from our students at the Ethical Finance workshop.

 

 

We are continuing to review our progress and consider where we believe we should and should not invest, taking on board the views of our staff, students and the wider impacts we have on society.

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