Galloway: We saw continued focus on how companies are responding to climate change risk. Particularly in Europe and the U.K., but also in the U.S., these concerns took on some new flavors, such as companies adopting or receiving “Say on Climate” proposals that encourage companies to disclose climate-related risks, targets, and transition plans.
Heightened attention to risks associated with diversity, equity, and inclusion, or DEI, was another key trend. Investors continue to focus on how companies are ensuring that their board, management teams, and workforce reflect appropriate levels of diversity. We see more companies providing enhanced disclosures of their workforce diversity statistics, their strategy to address DEI-related risks, and progress on their efforts. Calls for third-party racial equity audits, or social justice audits, also gained prominence on the ballots of U.S. public companies during 2021, and we see that trend continuing in the early 2022 proxy season.
One last trend I’ll highlight is the continued focus on company corporate political activity disclosures to help investors identify any risk of misalignment between a company’s stated long-term strategy and its lobbying activities.
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