Global Sustainable Investment Alliance Issues First International Assessment of the Sustainable Investment Landscape


Release of first global sustainable investment report also marks launch of the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance

WASHINGTON--The Global Sustainable Investment Review 2012 is a collaboration between the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance,, and SIF-Japan, and is the first report to collate the results from the market studies by regional sustainable investment forums from Europe, the United States, Canada, Australia, Asia, Japan, and Africa. The report measures sustainable investments in all asset classes, from public equities and fixed income to hedge funds and microfinance.

The US$ 13.6 trillion worth of professionally managed assets that incorporate ESG concerns into their investment selection and management represents 21.8 percent of the total assets managed professionally in the regions covered by the report, conclusively showing that the sustainable investment industry has significant scale in the global arena.

Europe is the largest region with about 65 percent of the known global sustainable investing assets under management. Europe, along with the United States and Canada, account for 96 percent of SRI assets.

Other key findings include:

• The most common strategy used globally is negative/exclusionary screening, with US$ 8.3 trillion in assets.
• Norms-based screening is also significant at US$ 3.0 trillion, but this approach is currently only found on a large scale in Europe.
 Positive/best-in-class screening stands at just over US$ 1.0 trillion, with the US market contributing most of the global assets invested in positive screening.
 Assets utilizing ESG integration are at US$ 6.2 trillion.
 Approaches to corporate engagement/shareholder action varies greatly across regions, but this is the third-most common strategy, at US $4.7.trillion.
 Impact investing and sustainability themed investments are comparatively small at US$ 89 billion and US$ 83 billion respectively.
 All of the regions expect sustainable investment strategies to expand as increasing numbers of investors realize the value in considering ESG issues and the importance of sustainable investment to risk management and long-term performance.

The release of this report also launches the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance (GSIA) and its website at The GSIA is a collaboration of the seven largest sustainable investment membership organizations in the world: Association for Sustainable & Responsible Investment in Asia (ASrIA ), European Sustainable Investment Forum (Eurosif), Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA), Social Investment Organization (SIO) in Canada, UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF), US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment , and Vereniging van Beleggers voor Duurzame Ontwikkeling (VBDO) in the Netherlands.

The mission of GSIA is to deepen the impact and visibility of sustainable investment membership organizations at the global level. Our vision is a world where sustainable investment is integrated into financial systems and the investment chain and where all regions of the world have coverage by vigorous membership based institutions that represent and advance the sustainable investment community. The members of the GSIA have worked together for several years to deepen the practice of sustainable investment and the launch today of the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance formalizes our work together. The GSIA Secretariat office is at US SIF. 

Lisa Woll, CEO of US SIF and the US SIF Foundation, said:   “We are thrilled to be part of the launch of the Global Sustainable Investment Review 2012. In an increasingly international investment sector, understanding the breadth of and innovations across sustainable investment markets is critical to the advancement of this field. Similarly, the work that is being done by the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance will allow us to bring our national and regional expertise to bear on international research, policy and other strategic efforts. Additionally, the ability to share information and best practices will allow each member of GSIA to benefit from each other's work.”     


About the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance

To learn more about us, visit our website at

The GSIA wants to thank the sponsors of the regional research reports used to prepare this document. These sponsors are noted in the back of the report. Without their generous support, this report would not have been possible.

Sylvia Panek, GSIA Secretariat - [email protected], +1 (202) 872-5346
Megan Smith, US SIF - [email protected], +1 (202) 747-7820