The Sustainability & You podcast has interviewed Faith Ward, Chief Responsible Investment Officer at Brunel, for its latest edition.
In a wide-ranging interview, Faith looked back across 25 years in sustainable business and finance – and answered questions on a wide range of topics, such as balancing return and impact with fiduciary duties, and how to make progress without strong data.
Early on in the interview, she was asked about the reason for her job title: Chief Responsible Investment (RI) Officer.
“As much as anything, it is to demonstrate we are taking RI seriously and making it equivalent in some way to a CIO,” said Ward.
“In terms of what Responsible Investment means to me, there is a lot of confusion and people attacking RI. At its most basic level, RI is recognising the interconnectedness between the physical world and the economic world and the social world, and recognising that means there will be risks and we need to manage those risks. We need to seize the narrative back, we need to make clear it’s about systemic risk,” said Ward.
“It is also a recognition that we don’t live in a perfect world, there are no perfect companies, and we need to manage these risks. Finally, I think RI is also the responsibility for trying to move the real economy – and not just remove ourselves from the debate by clearing out our portfolios in isolation.”
Sustainability & You podcasts interview experts across science, academia, government, business, the NGO sectors and economics, where they are shaping the race to Net Zero.
To listen to the complete podcast, go to Sustainability & You.