This event took place at Harvard University, Massachusetts in the US on September 13-15 September 2022. Refer to the agenda below for all sessions and speakers.

12:00pm - 1:00pm

Walking tour of Harvard University - depart from Charles Hotel

1:00pm - 1:30pm

Registration and light lunch - Loeb House

1:30pm - 1:40pm

Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
1:40pm - 2:10pm
The current global context is testing the limits of the economic system built in the last century. This session will look at the need to accelerate the transition towards a more resilient and sustainable economy. In particular, it will explore ways asset owners can influence this process focusing on the long-term outcome of their investments.

Laurent Ramsey

Co-chief executive, Pictet Asset Management and managing partner, Pictet Group (Switzerland)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
2:10pm - 2:40pm
This session will look at the evolution of impact investing with the pioneer of the sector, Sir Ronald Cohen who argues that we must shift the allocation of human and financial resources to creating positive impact.
Digital

Sir Ronald Cohen

(United Kingdom)
digital
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
This session will hear from investment leaders embracing 3D portfolios shaped around risk, return and impact. It examines what is next in linking portfolios to positive real-world outcomes.

Jane Bieneman

Senior advisor, Tideline (United States)
speaker

Andrew Siwo

Director of sustainable investments and climate solutions, New York State Common (United States)
speaker

Sarah Williamson

Chief executive, FCLTGlobal (United States)
speaker
Digital

Jaap van Dam

Principal director, investment strategy, PGGM (The Netherlands)
digital
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
3:25pm - 3:50pm

Break

3:50pm - 4:45pm
One of the defining features of the American Dream is upward mobility – the aspiration that all children have a chance at economic success, no matter their background. However, research by Opportunity Insights at Harvard University shows that children’s chances of earning more than their parents have been declining. 90% of children born in 1940 grew up to earn more than their parents. Today, only half of all children earn more than their parents did. This session by renowned economist looks how big data insights can inform policy to move the dial on economic and racial inequality.

Raj Chetty

Willliam A Ackman Professor of Economics at Harvard University, director of Opportunity Insights (United States)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
 

David Wood

Director of the Initiative for Responsible Investment, Harvard Kennedy School (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
This session will examine the global water crisis, the associated financial risks and action investors can take to address it.

Brooke Barton

Vice president, innovation and evaluation, Ceres (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
5:30pm - 7:30pm

Welcome drinks - Harvard Faculty Club

8:30am - 8:50am

Registration and coffee - Loeb House

8:50am - 9:00am

Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
This session examines research from the Woodwell Climate Research Centre that assesses the socioeconomic risks associated with climate change and shows how societies and economies will cross critical thresholds and face new vulnerabilities over less time than the duration of a typical mortgage. It will highlight the role the private sector can play and the importance of integrating the insights of climate science into decision making the same way financial and cyber risks are.  

Chris Goolgasian

Director, climate research and portfolio manager, Wellington Management (United States)
speaker

Zach Zobel

Scientist, Woodwell Climate Research Center (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
The transition to a low carbon economy will not happen with the flick of a switch. This session examines the role of investors in financing the transition to a low carbon economy including the granular data and measurement involved in assessing and understanding the credibility of a company’s transition plans.

Carsten Stendevad

Co-chief investment officer for sustainability, Bridgewater Associates (United States)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
10:20am - 10:50am

Break

This session will hear from leading Harvard engineer and climate policy expert on technologies leading to the decarbonisation of the economy, including direct air capture. DAC has many applications including being used to produce carbon-neutral fuels that can be converted into high-energy fuels for vehicles such as aircraft which are difficult to electrify. Among other things David Keith built Harvard’s Solar Geoengineering Research Program to accelerate the understanding of the effectiveness and risks of solar geoengineering, which is a set of technologies with the potential to alter the entire climate.

David Keith

Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics at the Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences; Professor of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School (United States)
speaker
Chair

Stephen Kotkin

Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Freeman Spogli Institute, Stanford University; and Birkelund Professor Emeritus, Princeton University (United States)
chair
What does it really mean to implement a net zero strategy? As more and more investors make pledges for net zero they are tasked with setting a strategy to achieve these goals. This session looks at the challenges of implementation including what behaviour changes are needed and how investors really need to allocate.

Michael Cappucci

Managing director, sustainability, Harvard Management Company (United States)
speaker

Bertrand Millot

Head of sustainability, CDPQ (Canada)
speaker

Fionna Ross

Head of sustainability institute, Americas, ABRDN (United States)
speaker

Rachel Teo

Head of total portfolio sustainable investing and head of sustainability, GIC (Singapore)
speaker

Charles Wu

Chief investment officer, State Super (Australia)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
12:40pm - 1:40pm

Lunch - Harvard Faculty Club

Different asset classes have different sustainability demands and different challenges including availability of data. This session looks at the potential to have different execution strategies across asset classes for net zero and sustainability ambitions.

Hyewon Kong

Vice president, head of responsible investment, Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (Canada)
speaker

Alison Loat

Managing director sustainable investing and innovation, OPTrust (Canada)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
Infrastructure investments face many and complex challenges including sustainability. This session looks at specific case studies of ESG in legacy infrastructure as well as the investor priorities with regards to green energy infrastructure.

John Ma

Partner and head of North America infrastructure, Igneo Infrastructure Partners (United States)
speaker

Max Messervy

Head of sustainability, Americas, Mercer (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
3:00pm - 3:25pm
This fireside chat will examine the approach by CPP Investments to incorporating climate risk into its total portfolio including a commitment to green and transition assets that is pathway agnostic.

Derek Walker

Managing director, head of portfolio design and construction, CPP Investments (Canada)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
3:25pm - 3:50pm

Break

Ambiguity around ESG ratings creates acute challenges for investors trying to achieve both financial and social return. The Sustainability Initiative at MIT is working to solve this problem through a program of research to improve the quality of ESG measurement and decision making in the financial sector. This session will examine plans to  chart a new course towards more rigorous and coherent methods for ESG integration

Michael Trotsky

Chief investment officer, MassPRIM (United States)
speaker
Digital

Professor Roberto Rigobon

Society of Sloan Fellows Professor of Management, Professor of Applied Economics, MIT Sloan School of Management (United States)
digital
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
Since the dawn of sustainability investing, more than 15 years ago, the debate over the balancing act of active risk, tracking error and sustainability has persisted. This session will look the relationship and how various investors tackle the debate.

Marc-Olivier Buffle

Head of thematic research and client portfolio managers, Pictet Asset Management (Switzerland)
speaker

Eric Farls

Senior portfolio manager, and ESG committee member, Maryland State Retirement and Pension System (United States)
speaker

Charles Hyde

Head of asset allocation, New Zealand Super (New Zealand)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
5:30pm - 7:00pm

Delegate free time

Special guest speaker

Soyoung Lee

Chief curator, Harvard Art Museums (United States)
speaker
8:45am - 8:50am

Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
Tragedy has enveloped Ukraine.  How this war might, or might not, end affects not just the people of Ukraine, but also the European Union and NATO, the Middle East and Africa, the entire Indo-Pacific.  China was already experiencing far-reaching negative effects from demography, the middle income trap, and heavy-handed Communist party governance before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  Xi Jinping’s decision to side with Vladimir Putin has been a gamechanger for many.  Instead of benefitting from a widening rift between the U.S. and Europe on China policy, Beijing has driven them into very close alignment and intensified the wider West’s attention on the economic and moral hazards of dependency on China.  This dynamic is reinforced by the trend to shape portfolios with ESG metrics.  How are investors navigating China?  What are the risks and opportunities?  How could the war in Ukraine and its global consequences further surprise us and potentially upend our calculations?

Stephen Kotkin

Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Freeman Spogli Institute, Stanford University; and Birkelund Professor Emeritus, Princeton University (United States)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
9:35am - 10:20am
This panel will look at effective stewardship practices and explore collaboration and targeted campaigns. Through case studies this session will examine the next generation strategies and tools for effective investor engagement and what frontier topics investors should be considering.

Louise Davidson

Chief executive, ACSI (Australia)
speaker

Marie Laure Schaufelberger

Group head of ESG and stewardship, Pictet Group (Switzerland)
speaker

Aeisha Mastagni

Investment director, sustainable investment and stewardship strategies, CalSTRS (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
10:20am - 10:40am

Break

This session looks at how human capital is a key value generator for companies, and addresses the human capital risk inherent in companies and how they are addressing it, including implementing technology, re-skilling and training for the future, which groups of employees they are investing in and how this impacts engagement.

George Serafeim

Charles M Williams Professor of Business Administration, faculty co-chair of the Impact Weighted Accounts Project, Harvard Business School (United States)
speaker
Chair

Fiona Reynolds

Chief executive, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
This session examines inequality in the labor market and the case for reform. Sharon Block has just returned to Harvard Law School after a stint in the Biden Administration and examines the role investors can play in changing the trajectory of income inequality.

Sharon Block

Professor of Practice; executive director, Labor and Worklife Program, Harvard Law School (United States)
speaker
Chair

David Wood

Director of the Initiative for Responsible Investment, Harvard Kennedy School (United States)
chair
This session looks at how and why investors can take meaningful action to address racial inequality.

James Andrus

Interim managing investment director, board governance and sustainbility, CalPERS (United States)
speaker

Renaye Manley

Deputy director, strategic initiatives department, SEIU (United States)
speaker
Chair

David Wood

Director of the Initiative for Responsible Investment, Harvard Kennedy School (United States)
chair
12:30pm - 1:10pm
This session will look at various asset owner case studies and how they are tackling diversity and inclusion, through their own organisational processes and practices, through manager due diligence and by aligning their investments with the SDGs.

Sarah Maynard

Global senior head, DEI, CFA Institute (United Kingdom)
speaker

Juliette Menga,

chair of ESG committee, Aetos Alternatives Management (United States)
speaker

Kate Murtagh

Managing director, sustainable investing and chief compliance officer, Harvard Management Company (United States)
speaker

Anne Westreich

Managing director and senior consultant, Verus Investments (United States)
speaker
Chair

Amanda White

Director of institutional content, Conexus Financial (Australia)
chair
1:10pm - 2:00pm

Conference close and light lunch