UK- Morley Fund Management’s socially responsible investment has launched a new SRI engagement overlay programme, Sustainable Futures, that enables institutional investors to ‘engage’ on social and environmental issues with companies they invest in.

Morley maintains the so-called Sustainable Futures allows institutions to monitor the social and environmental issues facing the companies but without placing investment restrictions on them.

Social and environmental engagement issues include environmental strategy and management, employee practices, health and safety, corporate governance, human rights, community relations, products and services, and climate change.

The new programme will provide:
* Twice yearly reports on key engagement issues, activities and progress;
* Tailored reports to address the institutional investor’s specific concerns regarding sectors or companies;
* Sample company profiles providing examples of key environmental and social issues;
* Briefings on specific environmental and social issues; and
* Advice on training and education on sustainability issues.

Paul Moody, head of business development of SRI at Morley says: “institutional investors will strengthen their corporate reputation by not only meeting members, shareholders and societal expectations of corporate responsibility, but also by using their shareholder power to improve corporate environmental and social performance.

“Investment criteria are constantly changing and there is a growing awareness around corporate responsibility. There is now a general recognition that issues such as child labour can damage a company’s reputation, and that environmental issues can impact on financial performance of companies. Recent corporate scandals have highlighted the need for strong governance and the need for investors to be far-sighted.”