Responsible Investments: A Study of why Institutional Investors have Policies for Responsible Investments?

Johan Muusfeldt

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

Up to, know responsible investments research have shed little light on how the policies for responsible investments were established and what the components are of such policies. The overall aim of this thesis is to understand why Danish institutional investors have adopted policies for responsible investments. The method of the thesis is based on a qualitative research of five different institutional investors and the paper is structured as follows. The first part takes us around the term and development of responsible investments. Second part of the thesis is focused on examining how the institutional investors practice policies for responsible investments in daily life. Thirdly, the neo-institutional theory of Rowan & Meyer and Dimaggio & Powell will be used in the analysis with the intention of answering the research question. Based on neo-institutional theory this study suggest that some of the institutional investors may have adopted policies for responsible investments with the intention of achieving legitimization for their businesses. Findings such as a lack of transparency about what they are in dialogue with companies about and the case that some of the institutional investors still are investing in companies who are clearly breaking international principles suggest that some of the institutional investors may have adopted policies for responsible investments for ceremonial reasons. Furthermore, the study shows that some of the institutional investors are subject to certain isomorphic processes in reaching legitimization. The paper shows that the institutional investor’s way of practicing their policies for responsible investments is very similar, which can be described from both the coercive, mimetic and normative isomorphism.

EducationsMSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageDanish
Publication date2016
Number of pages108
SupervisorsMia Kaspersen