As part of the Blueprint for responsible investment, the PRI has committed to showcasing leadership and increasing accountability, with a view to raising standards of responsible investment amongst all our signatories.
We are pleased to announce two new initiatives under the banner of Showcasing Leadership: the Leaders’ Group and the PRI Awards.
Where the Leaders’ Group will assess the breadth of signatories’ excellence, the PRI Awards will recognise individually excellent projects conducted by signatories of all sizes, specialisms and levels of development.
Signatories will be invited to nominate projects across four categories: ESG incorporation, active ownership, ESG research and real world impact. We will also present an award to the best project submitted by a signatory headquartered in an emerging market.
Entries will be assessed for innovation and impact by an independent panel of judges. The shortlist for each category will be announced in summer 2019, with the winners revealed at PRI in Person 2019 in Paris, on 10 September.
The PRI Awards will be a great opportunity for all signatories to learn from each other’s successes. All the winning and shortlisted case studies will be published on the PRI website, along with commentary from the judging panel on what impressed them most about each project.
Categories and criteria
Signatories are invited to submit case studies in four categories for consideration by the judges, who will score each entry according to category-specific criteria:
- Active ownership project of the year
- ESG incorporation initiative of the year
- ESG research report of the year
- Real world impact investment initiative of the year
As well as these four categories, we will also present an Emerging markets initiative of the year award to a signatory headquartered in an emerging market. The shortlist for this award will be comprised of the highest-scoring qualifying entries in the other four categories.
Before being scored by the judges, each entry will be screened against the general criteria. Only entries that meet these criteria will be considered for an award.
Active ownership project of the year
Entries in this category could include collaborative engagements, individual engagements, shareholder resolutions or projects including multiple formats.
Judges will base their decision on the success of the project in achieving outcomes linked to the PRI’s mission of achieving a sustainable financial system. As part of this, judges will consider the scale and ambition of outcomes sought, the success of the project in achieving those outcomes, and the degree to which the project delivers for investors and for “the environment and society as a whole” rather than only for an individual company or portfolio. Other factors that can be considered include the degree of innovation and the success of collaboration.
Collaborative engagements that are coordinated solely by the PRI are not eligible for this award.
- Give a brief overview of your project, its objectives, and why you decided to undertake it. Explain how your project contributes to achieving the PRI’s mission. (400 words)
- Describe the process of delivering the project, including any challenges and how these were overcome. (400 words)
- Provide detail on the success of the project against its objectives, including commentary on how this success has been measured. What have you learned from this project that can be applied more broadly? (400 words)
ESG incorporation initiative of the year
This award recognises the incorporation of one or more ESG factors into investment decision-making. The winner could be a new ESG tool, technique or product, and will most likely have broken new ground in the depth of analysis or the innovation of approach, or by addressing a challenging asset class or an issue whose materiality is difficult to quantify. Entrants should give real examples of how their approach has worked in practice by clearly demonstrating the impact on one or more securities, issuers, sectors, countries, asset classes, or portfolios (these can be anonymised) through valuations, investment performance and/or buy-in from investment professionals and senior management.
- Give a brief overview of your innovative approach to ESG incorporation, its coverage within your firm and why you decided to undertake this approach. (400 words)
- How does this approach stand out in the market? Why is it unique? (250 words)
- Give a practical example of how you have applied your approach to an investment (security/issuer/sector/asset class/portfolio), including any challenges faced and how you adapted to them. (250 words)
- What were the outcomes of this initiative for the investment and how have you measured its success? What have you learned from this approach that can be applied more broadly? (400 words)
ESG research report of the year
This award will recognise a research report that has broken new ground in the development and knowledge transfer of responsible investment approaches. In particular, the judges of the 2019 award will be looking for research that offers new and meaningful insights into the practical implications of macro trends (such as environmental challenges, society and demographics, globalisation and connectivity, emerging economy growth and dynamism, or technological advances) for responsible investment. Entrants will be judged on the originality of their approach, rigour of the research process and potential impact of their findings.
- Give a brief overview of your project’s objectives and how your approach to the subject matter differed from previous research. (400 words)
- Describe your methodology, including how you addressed macro trends and mechanisms for effecting systemic change. (400 words)
- Outline how your findings have been applied in a practical context and their wider benefits for investors or the financial system. (400 words)
This award is focused on research by PRI signatories, i.e. investment practitioners. For academic research, the PRI runs a complementary programme, The PRI award for outstanding research, which is open for submissions until 5 April.
Real-world impact investment initiative of the year
This award will be given to a signatory who has focused their investment activities on specific environmental or social impacts, for example by identifying new low carbon investment opportunities, or by aligning their investments with one or more Sustainable Development Goals. The winner will have identified clear objectives for their project and will be able to demonstrate substantive progress towards achieving these. Entrants may find the work of the Impact Management Project (IMP) useful in defining and measuring the impact of their investments.
- Give a brief overview of your project, its objectives, and why you decided to undertake it. (400 words)
- Please describe the scale of the project, financially and in impact terms. (250 words)
- Describe the process of delivering the project, including any challenges and how these were overcome. (300 words)
- How successful has the project been and how have you measured this? What have you learned from this project that can be applied more broadly? (400 words)
- Read all material on this page.
- Submit an online entry form. Entries open: 18 March.
- The PRI will screen all entries against general criteria.
- Qualifying entries are passed to the judges.
- Judges score entries against category-specific criteria.
- Winners selected based on judges’ scores.
- Shortlist published in July 2019.
- Winners announced at PRI in Person (10 Sept 2019).
Before entering the PRI Awards, please ensure you have read and understood all the information on this website, as well as the judging criteria for the category you would like to enter.
The entry deadline is 7 May 2019
During the first week of May, the PRI will screen all entries against the general criteria. We may need to contact you for clarification, and would appreciate your help in responding promptly to any queries.
Judges will have until the end of June to submit their scorecards to the PRI. We will use these scores to create a shortlist for each of the four categories (active ownership project of the year, ESG incorporation initiative of the year, ESG research report of the year and real world impact investment initiative of the year). In addition, we will create a separate shortlist for the Emerging markets initiative of the year, comprised of the highest-scoring entries from signatories headquartered in emerging markets, as defined by the IMF.
The full shortlist will be published in early July, and the winners will be announced at PRI in Person on 10 September 2019. The winners will be the highest-scoring entries in their categories. In the event of a tie between two or more entries, the judges will be asked to vote on their preference. The judges’ decisions are final in all cases.
We would like to thank our panel of expert judges, who are independent of the PRI, for giving their time to assess the awards entries.
Entrants must be signatories to the PRI both on the date they submit their entry, and on 10 September 2019. Signatories who are currently on the PRI’s engagement list (i.e. those who have not met the minimum requirements), or who are added to the engagement list before 10 September 2019, will not be eligible to enter.
There is a limit of one entry per signatory per category. If an organisation submits more than one entry in a particular category, the PRI will ask our main contact at that organisation to choose one entry for submission to the judges.
The judges will consider collaborative projects where 50% or more of the participants are PRI signatories and where the person submitting the entry represents a signatory organisation. You will need to get the permission of all participants before submitting the entry.
Case studies must be projects – with start and end points and measurable objectives – as opposed to business as usual activities (which are captured by the PRI Reporting Framework).
The awards are open to both ongoing and completed projects. To be eligible, ongoing projects must have been initiated no earlier than 1 May 2017, and completed projects must have been completed no earlier than 1 May 2017.
If you have any queries about the PRI Awards, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We will respond within two working days.
Terms and conditions
The PRI and the judges will assume that anyone entering the awards has read, and agrees to, the following terms and conditions.
1. All entries must be submitted in English.
2. Winning and shortlisted case studies will be published on the PRI website after 10 September 2019, therefore entrants should ensure that all information in the case study (excluding supporting documentation) is suitable for the public domain.
a. The PRI reserves the right to edit case studies for accuracy of written English and for clarity before publishing them.
b. In the event that we edit your entry, we will share the final version with you before it is published.
3. In the event that an entry is successful, the project/entry name and organisation name(s) submitted through the entry form will be used on the shortlist and/or trophy. Therefore please ensure that you are happy with the wording and spelling of these fields.
4. All entries to the awards must meet the general criteria:
a. Entrants must be signatories to the PRI both on the date they submit their entry, and on 10 September 2019. Signatories who are currently on the PRI’s engagement list, or who are added to the engagement list before 10 September 2019, will not be eligible to enter.
b. There is a limit of one entry per signatory per category. If an organisation submits more than one entry in a particular category, the PRI will ask our main contact at that organisation to choose one entry for submission to the judges.
c. The judges will consider collaborative projects where 50% or more of the participants are PRI signatories and where the person submitting the entry represents a signatory organisation. You must obtain the permission of all participants before submitting the entry.
d. Case studies must be projects – with start and end points and measurable objectives – as opposed to business as usual activities (which are captured by the PRI Reporting Framework).
e. The awards are open to both ongoing and completed projects. To be eligible, ongoing projects must have been initiated no earlier than 1 May 2017, and completed projects must have been completed no earlier than 1 May 2017.
5. Any entry not meeting the general criteria will be screened out by the PRI and will not be submitted to the judges. At the screening stage, the PRI’s decision is final.
6. With respect to criterion 1(b):
a. We strongly advise signatories to select their preferred entry before submitting any entries.
b. In the case of collaborative entries, we will classify each entry as “belonging to” the signatory who submits it.
c. If we receive multiple entries from one signatory in the same category, we will email our main contact from that signatory and ask them to select their preferred entry.
d. There will be a strict timeframe of one week for responding to these requests. If we do not hear from you within one week, we will submit the first eligible entry we received from your organisation to the judges.
7. The judges will assess and score all eligible entries against the category-specific criteria, which are available on this website.
8. The judges’ decision is final in all cases.
9. In the event that we receive a very large overall number of entries, the categories will be split between judges in order to reduce the burden on judges’ time.
a. The PRI will ensure that all entries are scored by at least three judges.
b. All entries in a particular category will be scored by the same judges wherever possible. If we receive a very large number of entries in a particular category we will ensure that all entries are scored by the same pool of judges.
10. The person submitting the entry takes full responsibility for ensuring that all information provided is correct, accurate and presented clearly so as not to be misleading.
a. If it becomes apparent that an entrant has submitted incorrect or inaccurate information, or deliberately misled the judges, all entries from that signatory in any category will be disqualified.
b. In the even that this becomes apparent after the award has been presented, the award will be revoked and re-presented to the second highest-scoring entry in that category.
11. The person submitting the entry takes full responsibility for gaining permission to do so from all contributors to the project, including representatives of their own organisation and collaborating organisations.
a. In the case of a collaborative entry, the person submitting the entry takes full responsibility for ensuring the list of collaborating organisations is correct and complete.
12. Entrants seeking feedback on their entries may contact the PRI after 12 September 2019. We will be happy to share your own scorecard, and any comments made by the judges, with you. We cannot share the scorecards of other entrants.
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The PRI Awards