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As an active owner, we exercise our voting rights and engage with the companies or issuers we invest in to make sure they‘re accountable and fulfil their obligations to shareholders and other stakeholders. In addition, we continuously monitor the ESG practices and stewardship activities of our fund managers.

Our stewardship principles

As a long-standing supporter of the UK Stewardship Code and UK Corporate Governance Code, we welcome the revision to the UK Stewardship Code in 2020 and are proud to have retained our place on the latest Financial Reporting Council (FRC) signatory list for a third year.

We're supportive of the Stewardship Code's aim to further improve the quality of engagement between asset owners, external managers and issuers, and the emphasis it has on establishing strong and transparent corporate governance practices.

Our minimum standards policy sets out our requirements for responsible conduct from our underlying issuers and external managers, which are aligned with internationally recognised norms or international conventions for controversial activities that are ratified into UK law.

Our stewardship policy has been developed to address a range of stakeholder, public policy and regulatory requirements. Our policy is reviewed annually to reflect our priorities in engagement with companies and bespoke voting policies for certain key themes. 

Read our stewardship policy


We've also developed voting guidelines that provide clarity on how we intend to reflect current stewardship issues in our global voting positions for the current annual general meeting (AGM) season. We’re currently updating these in advance of the upcoming 2024 voting season.

Read our 2023 voting guidelines


Engagement is a driving force behind our RI strategy. We’ll always engage with managers and issuers as far as we can before considering divestment. 

The overarching themes that we engage on include climate change, human capital and labour rights, composition and diversity of boards and executives, and executive remuneration.

For assets managed internally, we identify opportunities to engage on issues of highest material importance. 

For assets managed externally, we work with an independent engagement and proxy voting provider who facilitates our efforts. We provide feedback and input to regularly updated engagement plans. 

For recent outcomes of our engagement efforts, read our latest RI report.

Working with external fund managers

We carry out in-depth reviews on our fund managers’ responsible investment approach, and assign ESG ratings as part of our selection and ongoing monitoring processes.

We have a set of minimum requirements that state what we expect from your fund managers in terms of management and disclose around environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities. We expect our fund managers to integrate all relevant material factors into their investment analysis and decisions, and demonstrate active stewardship of both equity and debt holdings.

We work in partnership with our fund managers to continuously incentivise them to evolve their processes. Our expectations vary between different asset classes, depending on relevance (such as time horizons or types of instruments used) and current best practice.

We strongly encourage our managers to perform engagement in all asset classes.  

How we monitor our portfolio

We encourage evolving fund-specific ESG reporting from our external fund managers and have expanded our in-house expertise and ESG data to better track and manage our risk exposure, report transparently to our stakeholders, and communicate regularly with our managers.

We also appoint external agents who monitor our segregated portfolio companies for environmental, social and governance risks, and where concerns arise, engage and vote on our behalf with companies.

Our collaborations and memberships

To achieve positive change across pensions, investments and financial markets, we collaborate with a range of organisations to have a bigger platform and voice.

Some of the important market-wide issues that we collaborate on include climate change, diversity and inclusion, corporate governance and disclosure.

Our collaborations and memberships include:

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