2021 ESG survey

The annual survey has evolved over the years, enabling deeper insights into trends and into how attitudes toward responsible investing have changed since it launched in 2015. The results from our 2021 survey indicate that there is an amplified focus on climate risk and a strong commitment to reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

2021 ESG Manager Survey Summary of key findings

2021 Annual ESG Manager Survey: The red flag is raised on climate risk

Spotlight on climate risk

2020 ESG Survey

The importance of environmental, social and governance (ESG) integration is reaching universal recognition amongst the asset management community. Across the globe, regulators and investors are demanding more rigour and transparency for ESG analysis. There is a general acceptance that the incorporation of ESG considerations provides asset managers with a more comprehensive, forward-looking picture of their investment opportunities. The attempt to harmonise ESG frameworks within organisations is happening across the majority of asset classes. An increased number of firms are adding more ESG metrics into their investment process, expanding their dedicated responsible investment resources, and providing greater transparency through reporting. A total of 369 asset managers from around the world participated in our 2021 ESG Manager Survey, representing $79.6 trillion assets under management. Our dedicated research shows that asset managers are increasing efforts to improve the overall quality of inputs when integrating ESG considerations. 55% of the respondents now have dedicated ESG professionals, compared to 43% in the previous year.

n this wave of change, asset managers reported that data providers are integral in providing a broader perspective of companies or entities in the marketplace, with engagement activities playing a vital role in how asset managers make use of ESG-related information. Furthermore, the results from our 2021 survey indicate that there is an amplified focus on climate risk and a strong commitment to reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This commitment is likely to increase amongst asset managers following the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (also referred to as COP 26), accelerating the action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Key survey highlights

A 33% increase in survey respondents from last year, indicating the amplified focus on responsible investing

Active ownership continues to rise in prominence

An increased number of firms are incorporating additional ESG metrics into their investment process

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Recent ESG Reports

2020 ESG Survey

Turning up the volume

Have ESG factors increased or decreased in importance? Our 2020 annual ESG survey of active managers assesses the integration of ESG considerations in investment processes among equity, fixed income and private markets managers.

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2019 ESG Survey

Our annual ESG active management survey assesses the integration of ESG considerations in investment processes among equity, fixed income and private-markets managers. Our 2019 survey spotlights firmwide policies, personnel, use of data, engagement and integration.

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What is the ESG Survey?

We survey hundreds of firms from the active management industry, across equity, fixed income and private markets to under how asset managers are integrating ESG considerations in their investment process.

Why integrating ESG matters

Featured Author

Yoshie Phillips
CFA

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