More than 100 finance firms in the US and Canada representing $11.2trn in assets under management have signed up to the CFA Institute’s diversity and inclusion code a year after it launched.
The voluntary diversity, equity and inclusion code for the investment profession in the United States and Canada (DEI Code) commits firms to furthering DEI across six principles that “drive cultural change”. These are: pipeline; talent acquisition; promotion and retention; leadership; influence; and measurement.
“In addition, signatories commit to accelerating and amplifying the impact of their commitment by making the economic, business and moral case for diversity, equity and inclusion,” the organization stated. “Further, in Canada, signatories commit to implementing the Truth and Reconciliation of Canada Call to Action #92 and to embracing Indigenous reconciliation.”
The firms that have signed up include Alberta Investment Management Corporation, Callan, CalPERS, Cambridge Associates, Carlyle, GMO, LGIM America, MassPRIM, Mawer Investment Management, MFS Investment Management, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, Natixis Investment Managers, Northern Trust Asset Management, Nuveen, Oaktree Capital Management, PGIM, SLC Management and Wellington Management.
Signatories are asked to provide annual progress reports, confidentially, using an accompanying reporting framework, and the CFA has started using the data to compile industry-level statistics to highlight industry best practice and identify where more work on DEI is needed.
Within two years of signing, members must show that they have a DEI policy and statement; senior leadership ownership and oversight governance process; and a plan to integrate DEI.
CFA Institute president and CEO Margaret Franklin (pictured) said she was “honored” to welcome firms to the DEI Code, of which the CFA Institute is itself a signatory. When the code launched in February 2022 around 30% of financial industry workers were women, compared with less than 20% of CFA members.
“This is not a ‘pledge and forget’ process,” Franklin added. “By becoming a signatory to the Code, firms become accountable.”
The CFA Institute has also started working with European investment industry professionals to explore how the DEI Code can be introduced in the UK and across Europe.
“We look forward to working with investment industry leaders in the UK and Europe to explore how we can introduce the DEI Code to the region, while being mindful of recognizing market, region, and cultural differences in additional adaptations of the Code,” said Sarah Maynard, global senior head of DEI at the CFA Institute.
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“For all markets, we aim to bring a workable international framework that has been created, trialed, and proven to support and drive DEI work in practice.”