The growth of Environmentally Social and Governance investing (ESG) is becoming a more and more popular asset class, driven by investor interest and the realisation that companies that are mindful of ESG do create better returns over the long term.
Looking globally, the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) claims there are over 1,300 organisations responsible for over $500 billion of funds under management around the world. Trust and transparency are among the key challenges that often deter investing in ESG initiatives. However, Blockchain technology systems can help build trust and ensure transparency, as every transaction (be it in receiving funds, managing them or tracking how these funds are utilized) is recorded.
Against a backdrop of ‘fake news’ and where trust in NGOs, governments, media many traditional institutions is at an all-time low, according to Harvard Business review. Any way that trust can be restored can be no bad thing. Indeed, one could argue that it is vital, not just for fund managers and corporations to find ways to rebuild trust, but it is vital for governments too – which may, in part, explain why more and more governments are exploring how Blockchain technology can help by offering transparency and a source of information that is immutable and can be verified.
Populism is a political and social phenomenon which arises with ‘the man on the Clapham Omnibus’ being fed up with:
- wealth and opportunity gaps
- perceived cultural threats from those with different values across the country, and from outsiders
- the “establishment elites” in positions of power
- governments not working effectively for them
The rise of populism ought not to be ignored. Just look at the riots in Hong Kong, Chile, Iran, France and Barcelona, to name just a few. However, if systems can be introduced, not only to hold governments to account, but also to be made freely available for citizens to track and trace that what they are being told is actually…