Delve: Why Environmental, Social, and Governance Investment Standards Need an Indigenous Perspective
In the high-stakes realm of finance and investment, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria play a larger role than ever in companies’ decision making and commitment to creating shared value. In this accelerated transition toward cross-sector economic change, whose interests are centred and whose concerns are left out of the sustainability conversation?
Recent research out of the Desautels Integrated Management Student Fellowship (IMSF) program, with the support and consultation of Desautels professors, finance-sector experts, and Indigenous business owners, found an absence of Indigenous notions and viewpoints in ESG reporting standards. An Indigenous perspective on ESG could lead to more inclusive, equitable, and truly long-term sustainability policies in investment.
“The reason that Indigenous people and communities have been excluded isn't as simple as it may seem. There are complex levels to why access to capital isn’t straightforward for Indigenous communities. Part of that is about uncovering the more systemic challenges,” says IMSF team member Nabil Anouti.
“It became very apparent that there is a glaring gap when it comes to ESG metrics and reporting, including how underserviced and how unsatisfying it is for certain demographics of society who are not represented in those metrics, and it actually works against them,” says Dr. Sabine Dhir, Acting Director of the Marcel Desautels Institute for Integrated Management and an IMSF professor.
Read the Delve article based on the research by IMSF fellows Anna Abramova, Khaled Khadam, Nabil Anouti, and Tom Berger.
Founded in 2019, Delve is the official thought leadership publication of McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management. Under the direction of Professor Saku Mantere, inaugural Editor-in-Chief, Delve features the latest in management thinking that stretches perspectives, sparks new ideas, and brings clarity to decision-makers at all levels and across sectors.