Get Ready and Prepare for the 2018 DJSI Questionnaire

Methodology changes in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index 2018 assessment
Get Ready and Prepare for the 2018 DJSI Questionnaire
Publ. date 8 Mar 2018
On Thursday the 5th of April, RobecoSAM will once again open its annual Corporate Sustainability Assessment: the basis for selecting the best-performing companies for the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI). This year, more than 3,500 eligible companies have received an invitation to participate in the 2018 DJSI assessment. Avoid surprises by checking out our summary of announced changes for this year's methodology, and start your required preparations now.

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Every year, RobecoSAM raises the bar in order to identify best-in-class companies that outperform their peers by demonstrating sustainability best practices. This year’s most important changes are the expansion of the Climate Strategy chapter to all industries, and updates in the Corporate Governance, Policy Influence, Tax Strategy and Biodiversity chapters. Furthermore, the Impact Measurement & Valuation will be moved to the feedback section of the questionnaire and stricter rules will be applied to supporting documentation. 

Highlighted changes for the 2018 DJSI questionnaire

Climate Strategy: For the first time, companies in all industries are required to provide information about their approach to climate change, for instance in terms of management incentives and climate related targets. Companies that also report to CDP can benefit from the alignment between both questionnaires.

Corporate Governance: New questions are added on ownership by management, families and governments, and on dual class shares. In addition, companies are expected to provide more information about various corporate governance aspects in the public domain.

Policy Influence: Both questions within this criterion are updated. Companies are now asked to provide a breakdown of contributions among different categories of policy spending, and to provide two major issues or topics for which money was spent to influence policy.

Tax Strategy: Companies now need to have their tax policies available in the public domain. A new question asks about the company’s effective tax rate, while the question on Taxation Governance will be deleted from the new questionnaire.

Biodiversity: New questions on biodiversity commitment and assessment are added to the questionnaire and replace the previous sub-questions. Companies now need to provide a publicly available commitment on biodiversity and conduct assessments for their operations in biodiversity areas in order to protect these premises.

How Finch & Beak can help you

With almost 15 years of experience in Dow Jones Sustainability Index support, and a long-term collaboration with RobecoSAM, Finch & Beak has become Europe’s leading expert in assisting companies with their submission to ESG benchmarks.

Our work is characterized by our results-driven method that leverages existing assets in the short term, while identifying opportunities for structural improvement in the future. Our method proves its success by the fact that all of our DJSI customers that were listed in Dow Jones Sustainability World Index maintained their position in 2017. Additionally, more than half of our DJSI customers ranked in the top 5% of their respective industry.

Interested in our support? Please download the service description in the download section or contact Josée van der Hoek, Director, at josee@finchandbeak.com or call her at +31 6 28 02 18 80.

About Nikkie Vinke

Multidisciplinary advisor in ESG benchmarking, sustainability strategy development and execution. | nikkie@finchandbeak.com

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