Publications & Interviews

Publications

I am regularly asked to contribute articles to a variety of publications. A selection is below.

Climate Change and The Four Sciences And What They Mean for Investors Who May be Confusing “Like” and “Likely”

I was invited to give the keynote speech at the 2021 University of Cambridge Risk Summit, with the theme “Transitioning to Net Zero – Managing the Risks”.

The speech was entitled Climate Change and The Four Sciences And What They Mean for Investors Who May be Confusing “Like” and “Likely”, and in the speech I argue that investors should look not only at climate science to inform investment decisions and risk, but also engineering, economic and political science. I also argue that the best tool to understand climate-related risk is scenario analysis and I provide a simple framework for this. Finally, I argue that investors who want to contribute to solutions should do this through active ownership, working with governments and proactively engaging in blended finance.

The speech was also published by Responsible Investor under the title Climate Change, the Four Sciences and What They Mean for Investors (subscription only).

ESG: Let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater (Responsible Investor)

Synopsis: The Gartner Hype Cycle (describing new technology adoption) can show us how ESG may evolve. It suggests we’re over the Peak of Inflated Expectations or already in the Trough of Disillusionment. But in any case, decisively moving towards the Slope of Enlightenment with a firm eye on the Plateau of Productivity. What do I think the Plateau of Productivity looks like? (1) Focusing on active ownership (2) The type of impact investing that allows for change that otherwise wouldn’t happen (3) Distinguishing between risk management and fixing climate change (4) Advocating for public policy (5) An ‘Enabling’ rather than a ‘Labeling’ mindset.

10 Things Every Investor Should Know About Net Zero (Illuminem)

Synopsis: in my series of 1-slide PowerPoints that try to make sense of ESG complexity, I created a slide that captures all the moving parts in the ostensibly simple Net Zero equation: “Emissions – [Offsets / Removals ] = 0”. The publication “Illuminem” asked me to write a brief article explaining what corporations and investors often get wrong about the concept of Net Zero, and how they can do better.

Sustainability & ESG – An Investor’s Perspective (Royal Association for Commercial Law / Koninklijke Vereeniging Handelsrecht)

I contributed this article to the book “Sustainable Business and Sustainable Transport” – also the ‘conference proceedings’ for the annual conference of the Dutch Royal Association for Commercial Law.

The article is meant to ‘demystify’, for non-ESGers, what ESG is all about. In it, I discuss a brief history of ESG investing, the importance of objectives in ESG investing and the different ESG investing ‘instruments’ and whether they ‘work’. Also I provide some recommendations for policymakers & regulation.

Interviews

The Diversity Blog

You can learn more about me through this brief written interview with Praveen Gupta, where we discuss a large number of relevant ESG themes, including ESG funds, climate change, impact attribution, the role of ESG teams, the EU Taxonomy and ESG labels.

ESG Weekly Digest with Yael Rozencwajg 

Yael Rozencwajg is a podcast host who regularly has guests on to talk about ESG. She also invited me for a conversation where we touched on a bunch of relevant themes in ESG and sustainable finance, including  bridging the academic-practitioner gap; greenwashing and how much of a problem it is; why motivations in ESG investing matter and the need for collaborative platforms in different industries.