Grants / Projects we are funding

Changing the rules of the investment system: Fairshare Educational Foundation (operating as ShareAction)

Grant details


Awarded on:01/05/2016


Area of interest

Systems change

Following on from work that the Foundation previously funded, ShareAction aims to transform the rules, governance and incentives of the investment system by ensuring the voice of the saver is heard by their fiduciaries, policymakers and regulators.

What is the issue?

The UK has the second largest pool of private pension assets in the world (after the USA), despite only being the 9th largest economy. There is enormous potential for our investment system to drive positive models of wealth creation in the corporate sector in ways that secure sustainable returns and a better quality of life for the millions of people who entrust a portion of their earnings into the capital markets through their pension.

None of this will happen by accident. Conflicts of interest, misaligned incentives, unhelpfully narrow legal constructs and poorly designed regulation inhibit the positive potential of the UK’s investment system to deliver benefit to savers, society and the environment. ShareAction works at a systemic level and with a broad array of interested parties to illustrate the problems with the current system, demonstrate the potential of the system to operate in a fundamentally different way, and to win meaningful battles month by month that make a difference and help to build a powerful movement for change.

What will the project try to achieve?

ShareAction has identified the investment system as a lever which could help reduce inequality, improve working conditions, supply chain management and environmental sustainability. To achieve this change via the investment system ShareAction uses various tools to encourage investors to integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into their investment practice, a process known as responsible investment (RI).

Who might be interested in this project?

This project aligns the interests of ordinary savers, pension fund executives and trustees, investment intermediaries and the corporate sector to support an investment system which is a force for good whilst maintaining long term financial returns. We will incorporate all of these individuals into our movement for systemic change.

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