We believe that responsible investment consists of an array of factors that will shape the future. Such factors can either be sources of risk or opportunity. Consequently, our ESG research analysts play a key role in anticipating and interpreting RI trends like Climate Change, Health, Human Capital & Diversity. As a core part of the RI team, they provide insights to investment teams with the assessment of the most material – that is, the most likely to happen and impactful – ESG risks and opportunities surrounding  industry sectors.

As a leader in Responsible Investment for 20 years, AXA IM has also been deeply supportive of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) developed by the United Nations. These goals provide a uniting language to companies, investors and citizens that will further push the need for asset management companies like AXA IM to redefine our role in society. In this perspective, our ESG research encompass the needs addressed by the SDGs.

Therefore, we remain at the forefront of upcoming Responsible Investment challenges.

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Global climate commitments, embodied by the Paris Agreement, and local regulations such as the Article 173 of the energy transition law in France have raised awareness among institutional investors of rising climate change risks and the acuteness of this global challenge.

Conscious of the long-term stakes that climate change poses to our economies and by extension, financial markets, AXA IM has increased its focus and commitment on this issue in the last 3 years, which has been translated into investment decisions.

Therefore, we conduct research on climate change to help investors mitigate climate change risks, including reducing the exposure to carbon intensive industries such as coal. Our commitment to addressing global climate change is also highlighted by investing in industries and companies that contribute to the low carbon economy. As a result, our Climate Change research mainly targets SDG 7 “Affordable and clean energy”, SDG 12 “responsible consumption and production” as well as SDG 13 “Climate Action”.

Human capital, including diversity, is a key resource a company needs to properly activate in order to ensure continuity in business operations, spur innovation and economic growth. The ultimate goal for a company when it comes to employees should be to increase their engagement, as we believe this echoes employee satisfaction, pride, commitment and therefore their motivation to surpass themselves and make the business a success (more productivity, improved customer satisfaction, increased shareholder value).

As such, our analysis integrates various aspects of human capital policies and processes - such as working conditions, gender diversity, training and development etc. - to assess the relation a company has towards its employees, get a sense of the company’s culture and ultimately its positioning towards the talents’ attraction and retention, in an increasingly more competitive market tainted by structural changes (digitalization/automation, talent shortage, aging workforce). Therefore, our research addresses SDGs, with a specific focus on SDG 5 “Gender Equality” and SDG 8 “ Decent work and economic growth”.

While human capital and diversity integration in the investment case allows us to better manage financial risks and opportunities, we also seek to support transformational companies that promote human capital and diversity overall within their company and the external environment.

As a responsible investor, AXA IM is committed to monitoring and being engaged on trends which impact the health of populations such as tobacco, air quality, food safety, antibiotic and antimicrobial resistance. We align our thematic research with our global involvement in targeting SDG 3 “Good health and well being” as well as other health related SDGs (2.2, 6.1, 6.2, 7.1, 11.6, 13.1).

Accordingly, our ESG research analysts support investment platforms in assessing investment risks and opportunities regarding health topics.