Thought Leadership and Book Reviews



Ian Robertson, CFA

Thought Leadership and Book Reviews

Ian has been a volunteer leader in the investment industry since the late 1990s. He has volunteered extensively with CFA Institute - both locally and globally - and has been a leader within Canada as board chair of the Responsible Investment Association (RIA). He is an enthusiastic supporter of and volunteer at the University of British Columbia (UBC), and has been recognized several times for these and other community contributions.

A strong believer in life-long education, Ian is currently pursuing his DPhil (PhD) part-time at the University of Oxford, focussing on corporate governance and responsible investment. He has presented on various aspects of responsible investment at industry and academic conferences, including at the University of Oxford, the University of Sheffield, Imperial College London, and Saint Mary’s University (Halifax). His first published paper was awarded Best Student Paper at the United Nations’ backed PRI’s 2017 Academic Conference.

Ian is a founding co-host of CFA Society Vancouver’s book club, and is a longstanding reviewer of both fiction and non-fiction books. His reviews have been published in the Financial Analysts’ Journal, The Journal of Sustainable Finance and Investment, and CFA Institute’s Enterprising Investor, and can also be found on-line on amazon.ca, indigo.ca, and goodreads.com.

Ian Robertson | Founder of OxProx

Carlyn Runnels | December 20, 2021

Ian is a Portfolio Manager, Director, and Vice President of Vancouver based Odlum Brown Limited, and is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee.

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Proxy Access in Canada: Opportunities and Pitfalls Explored!

Proxy access – the right of shareholders to nominate directors for inclusion in management’s proxy materials – has not yet been established in Canada, but may soon become the norm. While some commentators may debate whether proxy access is necessary or appropriate for Canadian companies, the process has taken hold south of the 49th parrallel, and made its presence felt in Canada. Earlier this year, both the TD Bank and RBC adopted proxy access by-laws in response to shareholder proposals, creating additional proxy access rightsfor shareholders in the nomination of directors to the boards of the banks. With the recent developments surrounding proxy access, and the U.S.’ continued influence on Canadian firms, it is expected that the U.S.-style proxy access and its policies will become inevitable for the years to come. In this LIVE Webcast, a panel of thought leaders and professionals brought together by The Knowledge Group will provide and present an in-depth analysis.

Executive Pay in the 2018 Proxy Season: Trends and Developments that Matter

The recent years have witnessed how the nature of executive and director compensation significantly evolved due to the passing of current legislations and court decisions. This year, with the passage of H.R. 1 known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, along with the implementation of the CEO pay ratio disclosure rules, significant changes and developments are expected to shape the executive pay landscape this proxy season. With these remarkable changes, companies should review and modify their rules, procedures and policies to reflect new developments surrounding executive compensation. They should also remain vigilant of the risks and legal challenges that may arise. In this Webcast, a team of thought leaders and professionals assembled by The Knowledge Group will provide and present in depth the recent trends and developments in executive pay in the 2018 proxy season. Speakers will also address important issues and trends involving this hot topic.

Retail Investors, Responsible Investment, and Proxy Voting

Responsible Investment is defined by the UN backed PRI as the integration of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors into the selection of investments and into the ownership activities (proxy voting and engagement). First, this presentation traces the foundational investment theories underpinning portfolio selection, and shows how ESG factors can be integrated as part of the process. Second, it shows how those same ESG factors can be used when considering how to vote a proxy. It also looks at the fixed costs (time, expertise) of voting and the different incentives of investment owners and managers. Finally, it gives examples of how the proxy voting system works for retail investors and the types of issues they may be asked to vote on via shareholder proposals.

Responsible Investment: Past, Present and Future

Keynote presentation to Sobey School of Business, Saint Mary's University, Halifax.


RIA Annual Report

Introductory remarks made by Ian.




Podcasts l

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Making Sense of Responsible Investment
Kirk Lapointe and Ian Robertson
Feburary 13, 2019

What is responsible investment? If you choose to align your investment decisions with your values, what impact will it really have on the world?

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Responsible Investing in the times of Pandemic
Mahesh Joshi and Ian Robertson
May 20, 2020

We are here to discuss about responsible investing, Responsible investing becomes all the more important subject in the times of pandemic.

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Introduction to Responsible Investment for Advisors
Alicja Brown, Carol Smith, Ian Robertson, and Mary Robinson
June 16, 2020

This session provides retail advisors the foundational knowledge to get started with responsible investing, covering key concepts, definitions, trends, issues and developments in the field of ESG and responsible investment.

Articles l

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Closing the Gap: Gender Lens Investing and the Future of Finance
Ian Robertson and Sameer Somal
April 21, 2022

Public perception of gender equality issues runs in a repetitive cycle. We’ve all seen it. A scandal breaks out...

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Why Understanding the Differences Among Responsible Investment Strategies is Vital
Ian Robertson
JUNE 9, 2020

With responsible investing now accounting for more than half of assets under management in Canada, financial...

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Millennials Will Force an ESG Revolution
Ian Robertson
May 8, 2019

Today’s millennials are at a pivotal point. They stand at the threshold of their peak saving years and maintain a strong belief...

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Designing a sustainable financial system

Development Goals and Socio-Ecological Responsibility