MN: We have seen a trend over recent years to increase transparency around reporting, both self-initiated and from our investors as well. A few years ago, investors were happy to receive information on the financial performance of their fund investments, however, they are now increasingly focused on receiving high quality, transparent information on non-financial performance. Tools like GRESB provide a mechanism through which investors and managers can access the results and the performance of their funds and the underlying assets in which those funds are invested. As investors continue to seek more transparency, GRESB is a great way for us to provide that transparency in a consistent format.
CE: This has been a crucial year for ESG and ESG reporting for a number of reasons not least as 2020 has forced people to focus on the social dimensions of ESG. For those of us who already believed in the importance of ESG, this year has only confirmed our beliefs. For those who were not convinced by the importance of non-financial factors in investment discussions or decisions this crisis should have changed their minds.
MN: The focus on ESG within the sector will continue to grow and in particular around the ‘S’ component of ESG – the social. Historically there has been a huge amount of focus on climate. The emphasis on climate remains important and will not diminish in any way, nor should it but moving forward, we expect a renewed focus on the social aspect of ESG and the need for greater transparency across all parts of ESG reporting. As we continue to see developments in ESG monitoring, reporting will likely become more well-rounded across the social and the governance aspects in much the same way we have seen develop across environmental reporting.