It’s becoming clear that the effects of COVID-19 are here to stay long-term. Add to that the continuing issues of racial inequality, the increasing polarization of American culture in the run-up to the upcoming presidential election and the most recent wave of climate-change driven natural disasters, and it’s becoming increasingly clear that America’s road to recovery will be a circuitous path versus a straight line.
COVID-19 has turned into an inflection point. Not only is the crisis reshaping the ways we live, work, and socialize; but it’s also leading us to reevaluate fundamental issues of economic, social and racial equality – and the role of corporations in shaping progress on those issues.
83% of executives today feel an urgency for business to be a critical part of driving solutions to some of today's most pressing issues — including COVID-19, racial injustice and economic resurgence, according to the 2020 Porter Novelli Executive Purpose Study.
One particular example is the Black Lives Matter movement, which propelled many companies to step up and voice support for justice, reform and equity. This would have been considered a risky business move many years ago. But, today, due to the increased polarization of our country, even the most apolitical household companies have taken an explicit stand on issues like human justice, gun control, immigration, and women’s rights. Corporations that used to stay publicly silent, out of fear of alienating their customer base, now have a business, moral and financial imperative to speak up.
In our latest whitepaper, we discuss the importance of businesses having a positive impact on society and taking an inclusive approach in order to avoid reputational risk, but also to venture into unexplored business domains. The adverse effects of material issues such as climate change, gender inequality, financial exclusion, and resource scarcity are a wake-up call to stakeholders and shareholders, alike. Our view at Aneuvia is that sustainable, equitable investing not only increases intrinsic value, but also produces greater financial returns. In today’s competitive landscape, diversity and inclusion isn’t an option, but an imperative.
View our latest whitepaper for more on sustainable and impact investing.