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Socially Responsible Investing


Conscience Driven Investing

Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) is an investment strategy that incorporates environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) factors within the investment process.

Features & Benefits

With over 25 years of experience managing socially responsible portfolios and an ever increasing client base in diverse socially-screened strategies, Northern Trust offers a breadth of capabilities to build a complete portfolio solution incorporating environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors:

  • Multiple approaches to incorporating ESG factors into portfolios, such as negative and positive screens, shareholder advocacy, and best-of-sector stock selection.

  • Passive, active, and tax-efficient investment strategies to maximize investment and social return.

  • Unique solutions for today's most pressing issues, such as our Sudan Free Portfolio Solutions.

  • Exposure to global equity and fixed income asset classes and SRI-based universes, such as the Domini 400 Social Index.

  • Commingled funds and separate accounts for scale, efficiency and customization.

Social Investment Capabilities

We believe socially responsible investing (SRI) can be executed using a variety of approaches to incorporating ESG research within portfolios. Our relationships with leading ESG research providers, such as MSCI ESG, gives us the tools to develop an optimal strategy based on your requirements.

Negative Screens
Negative screens exclude companies with involvement in any of the following industries or activities that clients choose to restrict:

Abortion Labor abuse
Adult entertainment Military weapons
Alcohol Nuclear Power 
Animal testing Poor diversity 
Contraceptives Pornography 
Discrimination Pork 
Environmental destruction Stem Cell
Firearms Sudan 
Gambling Tobacco

Positive Screens
Positive screening includes companies with strong performance in any of the following ESG factors that clients choose to emphasize:

Board Diversity Firm Diversity 
Clean Energy Human rights
Charitable Giving Product Innovation 
Community Relations Product Quality
Corporate Governance Product Safety 
Employee Relations Product Safety 
Environmental Policy Work/Life Benefits 

Best-of-Sector Stock Selection
This approach selects companies with the highest ESG record relative to sector peers. As a result, companies in industries traditionally screened out of SRI portfolios, such as oil and mining, are included in these portfolios. This reduces the sector-bias common in screened portfolios. Best-of-sector stock selection also creates an incentive for other companies within the industry to improve their social and environmental impacts.

Shareholder Advocacy
Shareholder Advocacy describes investor efforts to submit and vote corporate proxy resolutions as a means of influencing company behavior. This strategy was successful in pressuring corporations to pull out of South Africa. It has also been instrumental in reporting minority hiring practices and improving environmental practices through adoption of the CERES principles (an environmental code of conduct).


Mamadou-Abou Sarr

Mamadou-Abou Sarr

Director, Product Development and Sustainable Investing
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Mamadou-Abou Sarr

Mamadou-Abou Sarr

Director, Product Development and Sustainable Investing

Mamadou-Abou Sarr is the director of product development and sustainable investing at Northern Trust Asset Management, where he is responsible for driving innovation and product development across our array of asset class capabilities. Mamadou oversees the strategic product group, and provides strong leadership in the area of sustainable investing that fosters the implementation of sustainable investing across asset classes and channels.

In his previous role at Northern Trust Asset Management, Mamadou was the global head of sustainable investing where he was responsible for environmental, social and governance (ESG) innovation and product development across our array of asset class capabilities.

Previously, Mamadou worked for HSBC Global Asset Management, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, Amundi Alternative Investments and Citi in trading, product specialist and business development roles in London, Paris, Abu Dhabi and Dakar.

Mamadou received his bachelor's in economics from the Université Jean Monnet and holds a master's in international project management from the European School of Management (ESCP Europe), Paris. Additionally, he holds the Investment Management Certificate (IMC) and the Islamic Finance Qualification (IFQ). Mamadou is an associate of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (ACSI) and a member of the CFA U.K. Institute.

He is a member of the UNPRI Listed Equity, Integration and Passive Investments committees and serves as an advisor of the George Barley Water prize (Everglades Foundation). He is a guest lecturer on sustainability at the University of Chicago, ESCP Europe and Imperial College of London.

Mamadou is a board member of the Lycée Français de Chicago, The Nature Conservancy Illinois Chapter and a member of the Museum Council at the Museum of Contemporary Photography (MoCP) in Chicago. In 2014 he was named in the Financial News “Top 40 Under 40 Rising Stars in Asset Management” in Europe, Middle East and Africa. In 2017, Mamadou was named a "40 under 40" by Crain's Chicago Business, being selected for the business leadership honor of leaders who've made an impact before their 40th birthday.


2017 Corporate Social Responsibility Report