Prize-winning paper shows how investors can influence companies on environmental and social issues


26-04-2021

A research paper co-authored at Cambridge Judge Business School on how investors can influence companies on environmental and social issues is named best paper in the annual Brandes Institute Prize.

A study authored by three people with ties to Cambridge Judge Business School on how investors can influence companies on environmental and social issues has been named winning paper in the Brandes Institute Prize. The annual prize by the division of Brandes Investment Partners strives to raise awareness and challenge assumptions on investing and portfolio management, and had more entries this year than in any other year including from top business schools in the US, UK, continental Europe and China.

The winning paper, entitled “Co-ordinated engagements”, was co-authored by Professor Elroy Dimson, Research Director and Chairman of the Centre for Endowment Asset Management (CEAM) at Cambridge Judge; Dr Oğuzhan Karakaş, University Senior Lecturer in Finance at Cambridge Judge and Co-Director of CEAM; and Dr Xi Li, Research Fellow at CEAM and Associate Professor of Accounting at the London School of Economics and Political Science. The three authors will share a $15,000 prize for the winning paper.

“Amid increasing attention and focus on ESG (environmental, social and governance) initiatives, the researchers deliver evidenced-based guidelines designed to show ‘how investors can influence companies to behave in a responsible fashion,'” said the Brandes Institute.

The authors analysed engagements by activist shareholders over a 10-year period, and their dataset covered more than 1,600 engagement activities targeting 960 unique publicly listed firms in 63 countries. The paper, which has been presented at numerous conferences, looks at engagements by a prominent network of activist shareholders and evaluates how this can improve target performance by influencing companies on ESG issues.

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