Investing in Sustainable Initiatives Via Mutual Funds

Megan Uhran

Sustainable Mutual Funds

Businesses around the globe are under pressure to look beyond maximizing profitability and instead prioritize issues of sustainability, social concerns, and governance practices. It is no longer sufficient to be solely a financially successful business as investors and stakeholders demand positive environmental and ethical missions from companies as well.

Beginning in 2000, over a dozen sustainability reporting organizations have emerged to provide reporting frameworks for businesses to offer transparency to stakeholders regarding their operations, commitment to sustainability, and ethical alignment. While these guidelines aim to provide clarity, they have become nearly useless to investors because each sustainability report is too unique to compare across organizations or industries and there are currently no regulations within the United States that monitor these reports. Investors are calling for a decrease in the number of sustainability reporting frameworks so they are not left to guess which should be prioritized and how to compare sustainability metrics across a variety of guidelines.

This report analyzes current sustainability reports available to organizations globally and specifically investigates the reporting guidelines which are most popular in the United States. This analysis is used to determine one optimal reporting system that should be prioritized moving forward which addresses the demands of all stakeholders as well as social, governance, and environmental issues.