The last count of ESG scoring methodologies/frameworks that I know of was around 600. That was mid 2021. So what’s one more? Institutional investor advisory Glass Lewis announced they are launching their own proprietary ESG scores. According to the company:
“…since the data is aggregated by Glass Lewis, and the ESG scoring methodology is owned by Glass Lewis, investors can use the underlying data and scoring in their custom policies (as an additional option)… The timely score summary includes a Board Accountability Score, an ESG Transparency Score, an ESG Targets and Alignments Score, and, for certain companies, a Climate Risk Mitigation Score. Covered public companies will have the opportunity to verify their ESG data through Glass Lewis’ Issuer Data Report program.”
One unique aspect of Glass Lewis’ approach is that “updated proposal specific ESG data is provided to shareholders and to public companies in advance of their annual general meeting allowing for voting decisions and engagement to occur with timely data and research specific to agenda items.” It will be interesting to see how much company-generated ESG data changes between the time it is reported and when the AGM takes place. One possibly unintended consequence is that this could put additional pressure on companies to push ESG data out without internal validation – a problem that has been prevalent in company-generated ESG data but seems to be on a path of changing.