Responsible Investing: Finance for the Future?

Date: Friday, November 8, 2019

Tentative Schedule | Details | Speaker Bios Research Expo

Responsible Investing: Finance for the Future? November 8, 2019, L290


Tentative Schedule

7:45 am Breakfast available
7:45 am –11:30 am Research expo (Sobey foyer)
8:15 am Opening remarks
8:30 am What’s Driving the Global Momentum?
10:30 am Responsible Investing: from Multiple Perspectives (Panel)
11:30 am Teaching Showcase (Luncheon for faculty members only) - Sobey 255
1:00 - 2:30 pm BONUS EVENT
Canadian Gateway Cities Panel
Four reflections on transportation infrastructure, global value chains and urban governance

Event Details

What’s driving the global momentum? Responsible investing for investment professionals and academics

Ian Robertson, CFA, Keynote Speaker (see bio below)

Ian will:

  • Provide an overview of the current state and trends in responsible investment (RI) in Canada and situate it within a global context
  • Clarify the origins and definitions used in RI
  • Highlight the evolving fiduciary duty for asset managers and for corporate directors
  • Critically review the evaluated research on RI
  • Review the implications for both investment practitioners and academics

Panel: Responsible Investing: from Multiple Perspectives

Coro Strandberg, Panel Moderator (see bio below)

  • Who cares about responsible investing and why?
  • What is the role of regulation and regulators?
  • What are the drivers of long-term investment value?
  • Participants will include institutional investors, asset owners, advocates and researchers.

Research Expo in the Sobey Foyer

Learn about faculty and student research and initiatives supporting the Sustainable Development Goals.

Teaching Showcase

How have Sobey faculty incorporated the Sustainable Development Goals into their curriculum?

Bonus Event

Those with an interest are welcome to join us for this event looking at innovation, sustainability and urban governance. Learn more about Canadian Gateway Cities here.



Speaker Bios

Ian RobertsonIan Robertson

Ian Robertson, CFA is a Portfolio Manager, Director, and Vice President of Odlum Brown, and is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee. Combining his strong interest in the impact of ESG (environmental, social and governance) on corporate strategy and valuation, and his commitment to providing clients with leading-edge investment insight, Ian is pursuing his DPhil (PhD) in responsible investment on a part-time basis at the University of Oxford.

He is a regular speaker and writer on investment issues.

Ian holds the CFA designation, which is focused on global investment knowledge, professional standards and ethics, as well as the Responsible Investment Advisor Certification (RIAC) which is focused on the integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in the selection and management of investments. Ian is a former President of CFA Vancouver and continues to volunteer with its affiliated global body, CFA Institute. He served as chair of CFA Institute’s annual conference, held in Vancouver in 2007, which hosted more than 1,800 investment professionals from around the world. Ian is also a member of the Responsible Investment Association’s board of directors.

Prior to joining Odlum Brown in 1997, Ian spent five years with the Federal Government, where he held several positions with a financial or economic focus – including postings in Ottawa with the Department of Finance and the Department of Foreign Affairs

Coro Strandberg

200 pxCoro Strandberg is the President of Strandberg Consulting, and is a recognized Canadian thought leader and strategist on scaling social and environmental outcomes in the marketplace. She advises governments, businesses, financial institutions and industry associations on ways to accelerate and scale progress toward a sustainable future.

She has over 20 years experience as a corporate director and is a faculty member of Governance Professionals of Canada and Directors College. She provides executive education on the role of boards in providing oversight of sustainability. Coro has been active in the sustainable investment field for over 25 years, since her time as a Director of Vancity Credit Union which launched the first responsible investment fund in Canada in 1986.

Coro is an associate with the Conference Board of Canada and Canadian Business for Social Responsibility, and is a member of the Office of the Auditor General of Canada’s Advisory Panel to the Commissioner of Environment and Sustainable Development.

In 2018 Coro was appointed to the BC Government’s Emerging Economy Task Force. Coro was recognized as the top corporate responsibility consultant in Canada in 2015 by Canada’s Clean50. She lives in Burnaby, BC in a LEED Gold Certified home she built with her partner.


Melanie Adams: J.D., Law, University of Toronto; B.Sc., University of Waterloo. Melanie is Vice President & Head, Corporate Governance & Responsible Investment for RBC Global Asset Management (RBC GAM) and a member of the Executive Committee. The CGRI team supports RBC GAM’s investment teams in integrating environmental, social and governance factors into the investment process, engages in active stewardship and provides meaningful client reporting on responsible investment.

Melanie joined RBC GAM in 2014 and has also held roles in Fund Governance and Strategy. Prior to working at RBC GAM, Melanie was Senior Counsel, Litigation for another large financial institution, and Enforcement Counsel at the Ontario Securities Commission (where she spent time working at the Office of the Criminal Crown Attorney).

Gary Hawton

As Senior Director of Client Relations at Sustainalytics, Gary drives business development for Sustainalytics in Canada. Prior to joining Sustainalytics, Gary was the CEO of Meritas Financial Group, where he was responsible for the development of the Meritas Mutual Funds, one of Canada’s leading socially responsible fund families. In 2010, Gary successfully led the firm to a merger with OceanRock, where he remained as President until 2016. Gary is   past Board Chair of the Responsible Investment Association.

Jane Anderson

Jane Anderson has more than 20 years of experience working in the field of corporate and securities law, working as both a lawyer in private practice as well as with a securities regulator.

Currently, Jane is the Executive Director and Secretary to the Nova Scotia Securities Commission, and teaches “Securities Regulation” at the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University.  Previously, Jane was the Director of Policy and Market Regulation, and General Counsel with the Commission. Jane also represents the Nova Scotia Securities Commission on various committees of the Canadian Securities Administrators (aka the CSA), a national umbrella organization comprised of all of the provincial and territorial securities regulators in Canada.  

Prior to joining the Commission, Jane was a lawyer in private practice with a focus on securities and corporate transactions, including capital raising, debt financing, and mergers and acquisitions. Jane received her law degree and a Master of Laws, with a focus on International Economic Law, from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Rob Sobey

Rob G.C. Sobey is a corporate director.  Mr. Sobey was the President & Chief Executive Officer of Lawton’s Drug Stores Limited until his retirement in 2014 after 25 years with Sobeys.  He serves as a director of Norvista Capital Corporation and SeaFort Capital.  He previously served as a director of DHX Media Ltd.  Mr. Sobey is Chair of the Sobey Art Foundation, a member of the Queen’s University School of Business Advisory Board and serves on several foundation and not-for-profit boards.  He lectures on topics of philanthropy, leadership and family business governance.  For his work as Honourary Colonel of the 1st Field Artillery Regiment of Halifax (RCA), Mr. Sobey received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.  He has an honours undergraduate degree from Queen’s University and a Masters of Business Administration degree from Babson College, and the ICD.D designation.


Principles for Responsible Management Education


UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Information about the PRME Poster Expo for Faculty, Students, Alumni


The Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) is the United Nation’s initiative to transform management education, research and thought leadership globally by providing the PRME framework, developing learning communities and promoting awareness about the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The UN SDGs have the potential to promote innovation, catalyze transformational change, and redefine outcomes in terms of the health of societies and civil liberties rather than simply economic growth. Focused on issues such as hunger, climate change, poverty, responsible consumption, and life on land and below water, the SDGs address “wicked problems.” Such problems lack agreed upon definitions, are complex with cause and effect unclear, and often involve stakeholders with conflicting views. Wicked problems also involve multiple actors in social innovation initiatives.

Based on our analysis of research for AACSB re-accreditation, we know that many Sobey School faculty and students have done and are continuing to do research on topics that are related to the broad themes of social responsibility and sustainability, and even more specifically to the UN SDGs. As part of our Sobey School’s commitment to PRME, we want to showcase findings from our faculty research, as well as the broader Saint Mary’s faculty and student community. Our goals are to increase awareness of the important work being done on our campus, as well as create opportunities for discussion about potential future research collaborations.   

If you have a recent conference paper or journal article, or a new study that is underway that links to social responsibility, sustainability or one or more of the SDGs, we invite you to submit a proposal for a poster presentation at our 2019 PRME EXPO on November 8, 2019. For consideration, abstracts must have been submitted no later than Friday, October 11th at 5 p.m. The Sobey School of Business Research Advancement Committee has a small fund to support the production of a poster for accepted and presented research projects (max $100 per submission). Those who wish to be considered for this funding should indicate this on the form below. The Research Expo is being held in the Loyola Conference Room, which is the same venue for our keynote speaker and panel discussion.


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