The College is aware that a number of our stakeholders have expressed an interest in our investment policy. The College holds no direct investments in fossil fuels and has no intention of so holding in the future.
Robinson College ESG Policy
Robinson College is committed to ensuring that it makes investment decisions responsibly and with integrity, always mindful of the principle set out by the Charity Commission:
“that the College’s power of investment has to be used to further the purposes of the College and that those purposes will normally be best served by seeking the maximum return consistent with commercial prudence” (Charity Commission Legal Underpinning note to CC14: Charities and Investment Matters (2011) para4.5, note f). The College therefore follows an investment policy which is designed to maximise the College’s overall return from its investments consistent with its educational objectives, income needs, ethical principles and the degree of risk which it is appropriate for the College to take with its comparatively modest endowment
The College believes that by engaging in a broad set of appropriate extra-financial considerations, including but not limited to environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, the longterm financial performance of the portfolio as well as the alignment between the objectives of the College endowment and society at large can be improved. These issues will inform investment decisions where practicable, mindful of the fact that the College generally invests in funds rather than directly investing in companies or fixed assets and of the fact that the College must, in the end, use its discretion in a manner that complies both with the law and Charity Commission guidance.
Funds are chosen because it is believed that the particular characteristics of the assets within the fund, as well as the fund manager personally, will contribute to the overall performance of the portfolio. The College typically owns only a very small portion of each fund so it is not in a position to influence any particular fund’s investment policy.
The College will include a review of ESG policies within the due diligence carried out before investing in new funds. In those few cases where the College does choose to invest in a particular company or fixed asset it will do so bearing in mind principles similar to those it applies to investing in funds.
The College takes the view that legal and regulatory requirements are there to police corporate behaviour, and it does not associate itself with any campaigning groups. This policy is kept under regular review by the Investment Committee
Keywords: fossil fuels, divest, divestment