We encourage signatories to actively participate in all areas of PRI governance, and there are regular opportunities for all categories of signatory to do so.
The Board is collectively responsible for the long-term success of the PRI, in particular:
Proportion of signatories saying that...
...they understand the role of the PRI Board:
...the PRI provides an appropriate level of disclosure relating to Board governance:
...against targets of 60%.
The five Board committees support the operation of the Board, working with the Executive on discussion points before final recommendations are made to the Board.
The committee is responsible for overseeing the values, ethics and good reputation of the PRI, including matters related to the PRI Association Board Code of Ethics.
FINANCE, AUDIT AND RISK
The committee assures the Board of: the veracity of the financial statements, the efficacy of risk management andthe strength and appropriateness of control processes across the PRI. The committee’s responsibility and authority covers the entire PRI Association and any joint ventures that may be entered into.
HUMAN RESOURCES AND REMUNERATION
The committee ensures that the human resources and remuneration arrangements support the strategic aims of the PRI Association and enable the recruitment, development and retention of staff. They must comply with regulatory and governance requirements, satisfy the expectations of members and meet target employees’ expectations.
SIGNATORY AND STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT
The committee guides the Board and Executive on: signatory categorisation, active participation of signatories in PRI activities and work streams, effective communication with signatories, outreach to prospective signatories and effective partnerships with key stakeholders.
SKILLS, DIVERSITY AND ELECTIONS
The committee guides the Board on measures to foster the diversity and the skills/expertise it needs to carry out its duties effectively. It facilitates the process to evaluate the performance of the Board and the Board Chair, and supports the Board in overseeing the election process.
During the 2015/16 financial year the Board meet three times in person and three times via conference call. Key items for discussion and approval:
Following a self-assessment, the Board agreed on four action points to improve its effectiveness:
The Board agreed to five goals for the forthcoming year:
Signatories acknowledge that the PRI’s Board needs to be representative of the diversity amongst PRI signatories in order to generate effective debate and discussion around the key issues that it considers, and to deliver the broadly-founded leadership that the initiative deserves. Diversity encompasses a sufficient mix of relevant skills/competence, and differing perspectives, including through geographical origin, ethnicity, gender, language and culture.
The PRI is a global organisation, and aims for global representation on its Board, particularly within the asset owner positions. The current Board is relatively geographically diverse, including representatives from Africa, Australasia, Europe, North America and South America, but there is no representative from a signatory with senior experience at an asset owner headquartered in Asia. As a result, the Board is proactively encouraging potential candidates in the region.
The current Board has a 65:35 ratio of male to female directors.
The Board undertook a skills self-assessment exercise that found the current Board is strong on: strategic thinking and leadership, and knowledge of the pension and investment industry (including responsible investment). As a result, the PRI is encouraging 2016 PRI Board election candidates who could strengthen the Board with expertise in governance and risk management (gained from Board experience) and expertise of working across multiple jurisdictions (gained from experience within global organisations).
Candidates will therefore be asked to set out within their election materials: governance experience, such as previous/current Board experience, and experience in investment markets outside of Europe/US, especially Asia. Candidates are also asked to elaborate on their demonstrated leadership within responsible investment, ESG expertise and other experience relevant to the long-term success of the PRI.
The Signatory General Meeting (SGM), held the day before PRI in Person each year, is an opportunity for the Board to report to signatories on the PRI’s strategy and its implementation, the work undertaken by the Board and its committees, forthcoming Board elections, formal consultations and any other business.
For more information on the Board discussions and approved items, the work of the committees, the measures to improve the Board’s effectiveness, Board skills/diversity/experience and the forthcoming signatory votes, see the SGM section.