UCL Faculty of Laws


Online | Institutional Investors and Investing for the Future

07 December 2021, 5:00 pm–7:00 pm

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UCL Centre for Ethics and Law virtual event

Event Information

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UCL Laws

About this event

The UCL Centre for Ethics and Law is proud to host a discussion on the recent report ‘A Legal Framework for Impact’ produced for the United Nations Environmental Programme Finance Initiative (UNPEFI), the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the Generation Foundation and published by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in July. The Report is one of the most comprehensive comparative studies of the legal frameworks for investing with sustainability objectives in mind, in 11 key jurisdictions, with recommendations made for institutional investors and policy-makers in relation to mobilising mainstream investment capacity for public and social good.

The keynote address for the event will be delivered by David Rouch, partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, one of the authors of the report, who co-led the legal team that prepared the underlying analysis. The keynote address will be followed by a panel discussion. Professor Emma Borg, University of Reading, will address the broad issue of the social legitimacy of institutional investment in leading and delivering sustainability goals for public and social good. David Trenchard will speak on the opportunities for shareholder engagement and activism in relation to institutional investors’ interest in sustainability goals, while Professor Lorraine Talbot, University of Birmingham will critically reflect on institutional investors’ shareholder roles.


Watch the recording

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About the speakers

David Rouch, Partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Keynote speaker)
David is an international financial services lawyer who became a partner in Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in 2004. He has advised the full range of financial market participants, dealing with some of the market's most prominent regulatory bodies. He is particularly known for his work on law and finance culture. As well as his work on A Legal Framework For Impact, he is also the author of The Social Licence for Financial Markets: Reaching for the End and Why it Counts (Palgrave Macmillan 2020), looking how understandings of financial market purpose affect behaviour. He is a member of the Advisory Group of the Oxford University Character & Responsible Leadership in Business project.


Emma Borg, Professor of Philosophy, University of Reading
Emma is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Reading and Joint Director of the Reading Centre for Cognition Research. She has published widely in philosophy of language, including two OUP monographs: Minimal Semantics (2004) and Pursuing Meaning (2012). Her work in business ethics has focused on exploring the so-called ‘social licence’ model as a way to reshape relations between the private sector, the state and individuals. In the past, she has worked closely with a Community Interest Company, Ethical Reading, to help improve ethical standards in the Reading area, and she currently serves as an Independent Advisor to the Professional Standards Committee of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.

Iris H-Y Chiu, Professor of Corporate Law and Financial Regulation, UCL and Director, Centre for Ethics and Law (Chair)
Iris is Professor of Corporate Law and Financial Regulation at University College London. She is Director of the UCL Centre of Ethics and Law and advances the public and stakeholder engagement of the Centre’s agenda in relation to a wide range of issues in relation to law, regulation, governance and ethics in business and finance. She has published extensively in the areas of corporate governance and financial regulation, including The Foundations and Anatomy of Shareholder Activism (2010), The Legal Framework for Internal Control in Banks and Financial Institutions (2015), Investment Management and Corporate Governance (2017), Banking Law and Regulation (2019), The Law and Governance of Decentralised Business Models (2020) and Regulating the Crypto-Economy (2021). She is a Research Fellow of the European Corporate Governance Institute, and a member of its Editorial Board. She has also been appointed as Senior Scholar at the European Central Bank’s Legal Research Programme (2020).

David Trenchard, Institute of Directors Centre for Corporate Governance
David was formerly Vice Chairman of one of Europe’s best known activist investment companies and today works as a consultant, advising investment companies on corporate governance, stewardship and engagement as well as shareholder activism. He is also a Non-Executive Director at Integrum ESG, as well as a number of other private companies. David was also a Member of Council at the Institute of Directors and sat on its Audit and Risk Committee. On stepping down from that role, he was invited to join the Advisory Board of the IoD’s Centre for Corporate Governance. Prior to his career in asset management, David was a Senior Consultant at Tulchan Communications (one of London’s leading capital markets communications advisory firms). He had previously spent 25 years in investment banking – mostly at Morgan Stanley – where he held various senior posts in equity sales and investment banking in Europe, North America and Asia. David graduated from Cambridge University, with a degree in Economics.

Lorraine Talbot, Professor of Corporate Law, University of Birmingham
Lorraine joined the Birmingham Law School in 2018, having previously held a Chair at the University of York. Lorraine writes and teaches on company law and corporate governance from a law in context approach, with particular emphasis on the political economy of the company. She has written several books on company law and corporate governance as well as many scholarly articles. Her current project, funded by the Leverhulme Trust, ‘Making the Company Fit for Social Purpose’, deals with the barriers to social progress presented by the global corporation and proposes reforms to promote companies with social purpose.  She is a coordinating lead author for the International Panel on Social Progress and co-leads the section on Companies, Finance and Markets.