May 20, 2020

Arnerich Massena Discusses Impact Investing in Intentional Endowments Network (IEN) Series: Intentional Endowments in the Face of a Global Pandemic

The Intentional Endowments Network (IEN) is showcasing IEN members’ thinking about intentional endowment investing in the face of a global pandemic with their new blog series, and the latest post comes from Arnerich Massena co-CEO and co-CIO Bryan Shipley, CFA, CAIA: “Lean In: Going Beyond Divestment to Make a Difference.”

“The challenges facing us, as a society, as educators, as investors and as a civilization, have never been greater. We knew six months ago that we were in an unprecedented era of environmental issues and social inequality. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has multiplied those challenges exponentially and highlighted in stark reality why it’s so critical that we begin managing and mitigating them immediately.” The article opens with a stark view of the realities facing us, but is a deeply hopeful and optimistic view of the opportunities we have been afforded by this tremendous challenge. Shipley makes a strong case for why – now more than ever – impact investing is a key solution.

“You have probably heard that the Chinese character for ‘crisis’ is a combination of the words “danger” and ‘opportunity.’ This pandemic crisis has certainly brought great danger – to our health, our economy, our businesses, our society – but it has also opened the door to a remarkable opportunity. We have been plagued for some time with severe normalcy bias, making it possible for us to believe that our planet isn’t in trouble, that our air isn’t polluted, that our energy strategies will work in perpetuity, and that our water is clean, among other dangerous fallacies. This crisis has stripped away that normalcy bias, allowing us to see with fresh eyes and giving us the opportunity to reimagine our future. We have been invited to take a deeper look at what is truly important to us and where we want to put our energy, effort, and dollars as we move forward from here.”

Shipley breaks down the spectrum of impact investment approaches, helping to make sense of some of the alphabet soup vernacular and comparing different methodologies. For impact investors, understanding how divestment is different from ESG and thematic investment – as well as how those approaches differ in their effects both on the world at large and on a portfolio – can make a big difference in crafting a strategy that will best meet their needs.

Read the complete article at https://www.intentionalendowments.org/2020_crisis_views_part_8

Access the full series at https://www.intentionalendowments.org/2020_crisis_views_part_1