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RobecoSAM AG

PRI reporting framework 2018

You are in Direct - Listed Equity Active Ownership » Engagement » Process » Process for engagements run internally

Process for engagements run internally

LEA 03. Process for identifying and prioritising engagement activities

New selection options have been added to this indicator. Please review your prefilled responses carefully.

03.1. Indicate whether your organisation has a formal process for identifying and prioritising engagement activities carried out by internal staff.

03.2. Describe the criteria used to identify and prioritise engagement activities carried out by internal staff.

03.3. Additional information. [Optional]


The answers above are related to engagement by the Governance & Active Ownership (GAO) team. "Materiality of ESG factors" is also used for CSA Engagement and conducted by the RobecoSAM Sustainability Investing Research team.

AO Engagement

Robeco's selection of engagement themes and engagement cases is based on an annual selection process. Themes and cases are selected in close collaboration with our investment teams, our clients and RobecoSAM's sustainability investing research analysts. By combining RobecoSAM's in-house sustainability expertise with our active ownership practices, and feeding the results back to our equity and fixed income portfolio managers, we truly integrate engagement into sustainability investing - setting the standard for the financial industry. Robeco's Active Ownership services are used by a broad client base.

Material themes for our value engagements are determined in collaboration between Robeco's Active Ownership Team, portfolio managers, analysts and RobecoSAM's Sustainability Investing research team. The focus is on long-term, financially material ESG factors that can affect a companies' ability to create value. Before starting a theme, we also inform our institutional investor clients in our thought process and involve them in the selection and design of our engagement themes.

For any given engagement theme, companies are selected based on the highest exposure to the engagement topic. Sectors and client holdings are a further important input at this stage of the process.

Each of our themes is refined using baseline research on the engagement topic. This is used to establish the starting point for individual companies, to keep the engagement focused, and to efficiently address the most material ESG factors. For each company SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) engagement objectives are defined.

In addition to the proactive engagement selection process for our value engagement program, we select companies for our Enhanced Engagement process that severely and structurally breach principles of the United Nations Global Compact in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption

CSA Engagement

Within CSA Engagement our approach differs from more conventional engagement strategies in that we engage primarily with sustainability leaders as well as companies aspiring to become sustainability leaders. Companies approach us to engage in a dialogue on how to continuously improve their sustainability performance and benchmark themselves against their peers. These companies set high standards for their industry peers, which in turn puts competitive pressure on the laggards, leading to improvements of corporate practices across the industry as a whole. The CSA provides a platform for companies to identify new sustainability trends on financially material sustainability issues in their industry and benchmark their own performance over time against their peers.

LEA 04. Objectives for engagement activities

New selection options have been added to this indicator. Please review your prefilled responses carefully.

04.1. Indicate if you define specific objectives for your engagement activities.

04.2. Indicate if you monitor the actions that companies take during and following your engagements activities carried out by internal staff.

04.3. Indicate if you do any of the following to monitor and evaluate the progress of your engagement activities carried out by internal staff.

04.4. Additional information. [Optional]

The answers above are related to both AO Engagement and CSA Engagement.

AO Engagement

The Active Ownership team identifies its engagement performance on the basis of measurable outputs and successes. We track the progress of all of our engagement activities on a quarterly basis, based on the SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) objectives established for each theme and individual company.

We generate confidential engagement reports as well as public quarterly engagement (and voting) summary reports that provide details of the results of our engagement and voting. Clients receive comprehensive voting and engagement reporting for their holdings under the mandated engagement and voting agreements.

In addition, in a monthly engagement meeting with all Robeco's engagement specialists, the progress of our engagement activities is monitored, discussed and evaluated. Ongoing improvements to the overall engagement process and approach are discussed in this meeting in a structured way.

CSA Engagement

Companies participating in RobecoSAM's Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA) are assessed annually, and receive a Benchmarking Scorecard to allow them to measure their progress over time in Economic, Environmental and Social themes. Media & Stakeholder Analysis reports highlight negative externalities to companies that have been identified by RobecoSAM and have led to a downgrade in a company's score - highlighting major topics of concern, misconduct, mismanagement or potential financial or reputational risks. Through dialogues with companies to follow-up on their performance, the issues key areas for improvement and issues are identified, best practices are shared and the investors' point of view (including the financial materiality of topics) are explained.