This year there are seven positions on the PRI Advisory Council up for election and the PRI encourages eligible candidates to nominate.
PRI Advisory Council
The Advisory Council provides the ultimate oversight of the direction of the PRI Initiative and empowers the PRI Association board of directors to provide fiduciary and legal oversight and the Secretariat to implement the PRI Initiative.
The Advisory Council has 16 representatives:
- 9 asset owner representatives – including a minimum of one each from Asia, Africa / Middle East, Europe, Latin America, North America and Oceania and three open positions;
- 4 non-asset owner representatives – including one service provider, two investment managers and one emerging market representative from either an investment manager or service provider*;
- 2 UN representatives – the Executive Directors of the UNEP and the UN Global Compact appointed ex-officio; and
- 1 Advisory Council Chair appointed by the elected Advisory Council representatives.
The Advisory Council is structured to ensure that asset owners predominate in guiding the PRI’s long-term direction; there is a geographical spread of representation to support the PRI’s global aspirations; the link with the UN is maintained at the highest level; and Advisory Council representatives, coming from a large number of jurisdictions and circumstances should be able to take up their role without fiduciary and other legal complications.
An elected Advisory Council representative has that membership as a result of being nominated by a Signatory but has a responsibility to fulfil his or her duties as an individual, and in the best interests of the Initiative as a whole. Representatives serve for terms of three years, are expected to attend three in person meetings per year, one of which is always alongside PRI in Person, and serve on one or more committees as required. Elected Advisory Council representatives are asked to sign an Asset Owner Letter of Appointment or Non-Asset Owner Letter of Appointment, which sets out in more detail the respective roles, responsibilities and obligations.
As a signatory-based organisation, signatories are encouraged to participate actively in all areas of PRI governance. Nominating to join the Advisory Council and making your signatory vote count in the election are important participation points. For more information on the PRI governance structure see the PRI website, PRIA Articles of Association and PRI Administrative Rules.
Advisory Council positions up for election in 2014
Asset owner positions
- 1 Africa / Middle East reserved asset owner position
- 1 Asia reserved asset owner position
- 1 Latin America reserved asset owner position
- 1 open asset owner position
- 1 open asset owner position
Non-asset owner positions
- 1 investment manager non-asset owner reserved position
- 1 investment manager from an emerging market reserved non-asset owner position
|16 June 2014||Publication of election notice and invitation to nominate.|
|22 August 2014||Final day for nominations.|
|12 September 2014||Candidates notified of their eligibility.|
|24 September 2014||Announcement of the election candidates at the Signatory General Meeting in Montréal.|
|29 September 2014||Launch of the election.|
|19 November 2014||Election closes.|
|24 November 2014||Public announcement of the election results.|
There have been several changes to the election timetable in 2014. To drive more interest in the election the candidates will be announced at the Signatory General Meeting, with an opportunity for signatories to meet the candidates that attend PRI in Person. The timetable has been extended to allow more time for nominations and more time for voting. Elected representatives will officially start their terms in January 2015, with the first in person meeting in March 2015, allowing for a thorough induction process for newly elected representatives and a handover of duties from outgoing Advisory Council representatives.
Candidates must be at CIO / CEO / board / trustee level. These criteria will be satisfied if the candidate is the most senior investment professional in the organisation, even if the job title is not CIO or CEO. However, other senior managers do not qualify. The board must be the legal board of the Signatory organisation, not an executive or subsidiary board.
Candidates will be notified as soon as possible if they are deemed ineligible or if clarification is required by PRI’s Election Oversight Committee (EOC) about any aspect of their candidature. Ineligible candidates have an opportunity to respond to any determinations which EOC will consider and determine in its sole discretion. All decisions on the eligibility of potential candidates made by the EOC are available upon request by the nominating signatory and any other candidates for election.
The Signatory putting a candidate forward as an elected representative of the Advisory Council must have contributed (or must commit to contributing) the invoiced financial contribution in the current financial year and must have participated in the PRI Reporting and Assessment process. The requirement around the Reporting and Assessment Process does not apply to candidates from Service Partner Signatories, or Signatories who are not required to do the Reporting and Assessment process because it is their first year as a signatory. The signatory organisation that nominated and / or supports the Advisory Council representative is responsible for all of the individual’s costs associated with Advisory Council meetings and PRI events.
Candidates may self-nominate, but must be seconded by another Signatory who is in the same class of Signatory as the nominating candidate. For example, a nominee from an asset owner signatory must be seconded by another asset owner signatory.
Campaigning should be carried out in a respectful manner and in a way which does not bring the PRI Initiative into disrepute. It should avoid commercial considerations of the organisations that nominated candidates. Candidates must comply with any reasonable directions which may be issued by the Returning Officer on behalf of the EOC. If the EOC determines a candidate has acted inappropriately, it may remove the candidate from the process.
For privacy reasons, candidates are not able to have access to the PRI’s database of contacts but are free to contact other signatories to ask for their support.
On 29 September main contacts at signatory organisations will receive an invitation to vote in the 2014 election. The election voting will be conducted through an independent online electoral poll and all votes are anonymous. Signatories will be invited to consider the candidates’ biographies and campaign statements, the diversity of the candidates and what experience and skills they might bring to the Advisory Council.
Each signatory shall have as many votes as there are vacancies in their signatory category.
- Signatories may not cast more than one vote per candidate.
- The candidate who receives the highest voting rank for a particular reserved position will automatically take that position provided that such a candidate is eligible for the vacant reserved position.
- The open position will be taken by the highest ranked candidate who has not qualified for a reserved position.
Asset owner signatories:
- Asset owner signatories are only eligible to vote for the asset owner candidates.
- In 2014 asset owner signatories have five votes.
Non-asset owner signatories:
- Investment managers and service partners are only eligible to vote for the non asset-owner candidates.
- In 2014 non-asset owner signatories have two votes.
For more information about candidate eligibility, the election timetable and the voting procedure see the PRI Advisory Council election rules. If your organisation main contact has not received an invitation after the election start date please contact email@example.com.
PRI governance review
The role and responsibilities of the Advisory Council and the election rules are according to the current Articles of Association and Administrative Rules. The PRI is currently undertaking a governance review and it is envisioned that a revised structure and associated rules will be implemented from late 2014 onwards. New Advisory Council representatives will play an important part in that implementation and, accordingly the composition, role and responsibilities of Advisory Council representatives could change over time.
The expectation is that directors on the new Board (post April 2015) will need to allocate 12-15 working days per year to perform their duties, including:
- Three two day in person meetings (that include committee meetings);
- Interim Board calls and committee calls;
- PRI in Person attendance; and
- Preparation time.
(Excludes travel time.)
The election process is overseen by the PRI Senior Corporate Officer, Christopher Sperling. If you have any queries about the role of the Advisory Council representatives, the election rules or procedures contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Note that the reserved non-asset positions have been revised this year. These revisions are intended to ensure a balance of signatory category and markets within the non-asset owner positions. In the transition to the revised rules on reserved non-asset owner Advisory Council representative positions the Advisory Council has decided to call for the following in this election: two investment manager representatives, with at least one from an emerging market. This ensures a balance of non-asset owner representatives with regards to signatory category and developed and emerging markets.