Responsible Investing Affiliations

UTAM believes that there is strength in numbers, and that by working together with other like-minded investors, we can achieve together what might not be possible individually.

As our approach to responsible investing has evolved over time, we’ve moved from just joining organizations to, in some cases, taking on leadership roles within them.

The list below shows the external organizations supporting advocacy and collaboration to which we currently belong.

30% Club Canada

30% Club Canada members commit to a Statement of Intent that expresses the collective objective to achieve a minimum of 30% women on the boards and at the executive management level of S&P/TSX Composite Index listed companies by 2022.

UTAM actively participates in the 30% Club Canada Investor Group, which coordinates the investment community’s approach to promoting diversity on boards and within senior leadership at investee companies. The group also promotes the exercise of ownership rights to effect change, and it encourages all investors to engage on the issue of diversity with board chairs and senior management teams. Activities include direct engagement with S&P/TSX listed companies that have gender imbalance on their boards.

Member since 2018

Canadian Coalition for Good Governance

The Canadian Coalition for Good Governance (CCGG) represents the interests of institutional investors in promoting sound corporate governance practices among Canadian public companies.

In 2018, the CCGG published The Directors’ E&S Guidebook, which provides practical insights and recommendations for effective board oversight and company disclosure of environmental and social (E&S) factors. We support the CCGG’s efforts to assist boards in developing a robust, principles-based approach to the governance and oversight of E&S factors and to bring a deeper dialogue between companies and investors in this area. Daren Smith, our former President and CIO, was appointed to the board of the CCGG in 2019. In 2020, he was appointed the Vice-Chair of the E&S Committee.

Member since 2008


The CDP, formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project, operates the global environmental disclosure system. Each year CDP supports thousands of companies, cities, states and regions to measure and manage their risks and opportunities on climate change, water security and deforestation.

UTAM is an active contributor to various CDP initiatives, including its Non-Disclosure Campaign, in which we engage with companies that have not responded to CDP’s disclosure requests.

Signatory since 2016

Climate Action 100+

Climate Action 100+ is an investor-led initiative to ensure the world’s largest corporate greenhouse gas emitters take necessary action on climate change. The companies include 100 “systemically important emitters,” accounting for two-thirds of annual global industrial emissions, alongside more than 60 others.

We were a founding participant in the initiative and are working with other investors to engage with a number of companies on the list.

Signatory since 2017

Institutional Limited Partners Association

The Institutional Limited Partners Association (ILPA) advances the interests of private equity investors globally through education programs, independent research, development of best practices, and opportunities for networking and collaboration.

UTAM has endorsed ILPA’s Private Equity Principles, which stipulate that managers should provide investors with portfolio information on all material risks, including those related to environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors. ILPA has included several examples from UTAM in its ESG Roadmap and Resources. The Roadmap includes a compilation of best practices that limited partners can consider implementing to advance ESG investing efforts at their organizations.

Member since 2002

Intentional Endowments Network

The Intentional Endowments Network (IEN) is a membership organization of likeminded institutions of higher education that collectively seek to advance consideration and implementation of their individual responsible investing initiatives.

Chuck O’Reilly, our President and CIO, is on the IEN’s net zero endowment steering committee. We have also participated in a number of IEN webinars, where we have shared our approach to responsible investing.

Member since 2018

International Corporate Governance Network

The International Corporate Governance Network’s mission is to promote effective standards of corporate governance and investor stewardship to advance efficient markets and sustainable economies worldwide.

UTAM has endorsed the ICGN Global Stewardship Principles, which set out ICGN’s view of best practices in relation to investor stewardship obligations, policies and processes.

Member since 2020

Montréal Carbon Pledge

By signing the Montréal Carbon Pledge, investors commit to measure and publicly disclose the carbon footprint of their investment portfolios on an annual basis. The Pledge was launched in September 2014 at PRI in Person in Montreal, and it is supported by the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI).

We publish the carbon footprint of the Pension and Endowment portfolios on an annual basis.

Signatory since 2017

Pension Investment Association of Canada

The Pension Investment Association of Canada (PIAC) promotes and evaluates sound pension and corporate governance standards and practices.

Until June 2020, our Chief Operating Officer, Lisa Becker, was a member of PIAC’s Investor Stewardship Committee, and since then, Lu Yao, a senior member of our investment team, has taken her place. The committee aims to develop, monitor and promote robust standards and best practices for investor stewardship of pensions in Canada. Activities reviewed by the committee include proxy voting, corporate engagement, governance, integrating ESG factors into the investment process, and advocacy around responsible investing with policy-makers and standard-setters.

Member since 2004

Principles for Responsible Investment

The Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) supports a global network of signatories as they incorporate ESG factors into their investment decisions. The PRI acts in the long-term interests of financial markets, economies, society and the environment.

Doug Chau, our Chief Risk Officer, is a member of the PRI’s Asset Owner Technical Advisory Committee, which provides advice, tools and support to asset owners implementing the PRI. The committee also undertakes engagement with industry stakeholders, including existing and potential PRI signatories, about responsible investment practices.

Signatory since 2016

Responsible Investment Association

The Responsible Investment Association (RIA) brings together Canadian mutual fund companies, financial institutions, asset managers, advisors, consultants, researchers and individual investors who believe that integrating ESG factors into investment management can yield superior risk-adjusted returns and positive societal impact.

Lisa Becker, our Chief Operating Officer, serves on the RIA’s board. Until June 2020, she served as Secretary of the RIA and Chair of the Governance Policy Committee. She now serves as Treasurer and the Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee. UTAM actively contributes to the RIA Toronto Working Group, regularly hosting its meetings.

Member since 2016

Standards Board for Alternative Investments

The SBAI is a standard-setting body for the alternative investment industry and acts as custodian of the Standards. It provides a powerful mechanism for creating a framework of transparency, integrity and good governance, which improves how the industry operates, facilitates investor due diligence and complements public policy.

Daren Smith, our former President and CIO, joined the SBAI’s Responsible Investing working group in 2020.

Member since 2018

Un-Convened Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance

The Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance (the “Alliance”) is an international group of 61 institutional investors (representing US$10 trillion of assets under management) delivering on a bold commitment to transition their investment portfolios to net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050.

The Alliance has established a framework to guide its members towards the 2050 net zero objective. The framework includes setting ambitious five-year targets, and members must report regularly on their progress towards these targets. UTAM’s membership in the Alliance on behalf of the University’s Endowment makes U of T the first university in the world to join the Alliance.

Member since 2021

University Network for Investor Engagement (UNIE)

UNIE is a corporate engagement program for Canadian university endowments and pension plans, launched in February 2021. UNIE is coordinated by Shareholder Association for Research & Education (SHARE), a leading not-for-profit organization in responsible investment services, research and education. SHARE works with a growing network of institutional investors, helping them to become active owners and develop and implement responsible investment policies and practices.

UTAM is a founding participant of UNIE. Chuck O’Reilly, our President and CIO, represents UTAM and the University of Toronto in this initiative.

Member since 2021