Hugh Lawson, a trustee of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the global head of Institutional Client Strategy at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, delivered the keynote address at the Sustainable Investing Forum of the World Resources Institute in October. Mr. Lawson spoke about his experiences integrating ESG (environmental, social, governance) principles into portfolios at Goldman Sachs, and the RBF’s adoption of mission-aligned investment practices, including its process of divesting fossil fuels from its portfolio.
He emphasized the important role that the investment community plays in creating change: “Many investors who have sustainability as a priority believe that the future has to be, and will be, fundamentally different than the past. Many go further and are taking steps to bring this future closer with urgency. This world view believes that the current state of affairs on the planet is unacceptable and therefore looking to passive indices that do not seem to anticipate the change in the world many would like to see is not a satisfying result.”