Announcing the New RI Guidebook

Heartland Capital Strategies (HCS) has been commissioned by the AFL-CIO and partners to author a new Responsible Investor Guidebook to help trustees implement responsible investment (RI). The 2013 AFL-CIO Constitutional Convention passed Resolution #13 on retirement security, and it called for all capital stewards to invest responsibly. Heartland, as you may know, fosters a “Community of Practice” for Economic Impact Investors. The Guidebook will highlight leading capital stewards who have prudently and profitably invested in rebuilding our cities, revitalizing the industrial commons, growing the clean economy and pushing “the boss” to be fairer.

We are releasing, today, a Guidebook Summary.

The purpose of the new Guidebook will be to illustrate how the investment of workers’ capital assets, such as pension and institutional funds, can be targeted to generate specific environmental, social and governance (ESG) benefits along with competitive financial and economic returns. It will shine a torch on the increasing number of financial and academic studies that have found a clear correlation between good corporate governance and/or high ESG ratings and financial outperformance. It will demonstrate:

  • The history of responsible investment, and Labor’s pioneering roles in building housing, banks, businesses, hospitals and services for workers for nearly a century;

  • How to incorporate ESG criteria into investment management;

  • The principles and regulations regarding RI, and the transition from ETIs (economically targeted investments) to ESG (environmental, social, governance);

  • Good pension fund governance and corporate governance practices for capital stewards;

  • How trust-based plans can re-align the investments of the plan’s assets with the long-term economic interests of the plan’s participants and beneficiaries;

  • Best policies and practices and a sample of available tools to help implement RI and measure ESG impacts.

The book will explore, for example, innovative investments and green bond programs to rebuild the infrastructure, private capital strategies to turn around critical industries and successful best practices to build affordable and workforce housing.

Click the link for a copy of the Guidebook Summary, Renewing America, Restoring Trust.

The Guidebook will make note of three distinct long-term investment approaches to RI:

  • Patient capital — allowing investors to access illiquidity premia, while lowering turnover, encouraging less pro-cyclical investment strategies, yielding financial stability, higher ROR.

  • Engaged capital — which encourages active voting policies, leading to better corporate governance.

  • Productive capital — providing support for infrastructure development, SME finance, built environment, etc. (Source: OECD).

The Guidebook is co-authored by Thomas Croft, Managing Director and co-founder of Heartland, and Annie Malhotra, CFA, a finance professional with impact investment experience. With this Guidebook, we have endeavored to increase the knowledge and understanding of responsible investment practices for trustees and capital stewards who have taken the lead to invest responsibly. This book represents a call to all pension and institutional investors to engage in the responsible investment of workers’ capital; explore and minimize entrenched barriers; and spur action!

Since 1995, Heartland has been a thought leader in the literature of responsible investment and innovative capital strategies to renew and revitalize the economy, and we have contributed to the growth of worker-friendly investment funds that have saved or created tens of thousands of jobs. From ETIs to ESG, Heartland researchers and our colleagues have contributed numerous books and papers to this field and inspired other authors. Among our most noted works:

  • Up from Wall Street: The Responsible Alternative, Thomas Croft (2009, Cosimo Books)

  • The Next Generation of Responsible Investing, Edited by Tessa Hebb (2012, Springer Publishing)

  • Helping Workers’ Capital Work Harder: A Report on Global ETIs (2009). Commissioned by the Global Unions Committee on Workers’ Capital (CWC).

  • Working Capital: The Power of Labor’s Capital, edited by Tessa Hebb, Archon Fung and Joel Rogers. (2001, Cornell University Press)

To receive a Responsible Investor Guidebook summary or order the upcoming Guidebook, contact,, or call 412-342-0534. We would love to also hear any ideas you might have as to how to market the book, identifying potential publishers, education and training opportunities, etc.

So, please click the link below for a copy of the Guidebook Summary, Renewing America, Restoring Retirement Trust.

Renewing America, Restoring Retirement Trust


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