Category Archives: responsible investment

On The Leveraging of Effective Altruism

As the practical philosophy of ‘Effective Altruism’ comes under unprecedented public scrutiny, I thought it could be helpful to post a short passage of critical comment on it that comes from my book, Global Justice and Finance (Oxford University Press … Continue reading

Posted in Finance, global justice, political philosophy, responsible investment, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Trees don’t grow on money – or why you don’t get to rebel against extinction

Money doesn’t grow on trees, and although people can make money out of trees, they cannot make trees out of money. This much may seem platitudinous, but it is worth keeping in mind. What is true of trees is true … Continue reading

Posted in climate change, environment, environmental ethics, media, political philosophy, responsible investment, Uncategorized | 40 Comments

Water: a human right?

Is there a human right to water? Nestle’s CEO once notoriously suggested that the idea is an extreme one put about by NGOs.[1] Just this week, the same corporation has sparked controversy in a municipality of Ontario by outbidding the … Continue reading

Posted in climate change, ecological space, environment, environmental ethics, fair trade, global justice, health, human rights, political philosophy, responsible investment, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

To Divest or Not to Divest – Or Neither?

The University of Edinburgh has decided to resist the call from campaigners and some of its academics to divest decisively from fossil fuels. Does it matter? Nobody – on either side of the debate – can sincerely think that the … Continue reading

Posted in environment, responsible investment, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Investment in Reality

In my final blog of three on responsible investment I offer some reflections on how to think about realities of wealth without being distracted by the symbolic representation of it that money, so unreliably at times, conveys.  While doing so, … Continue reading

Posted in ecological space, environment, fair trade, global justice, human rights, responsible investment | Leave a comment

University investments and economic growth

In the second of my reflections on the University of Edinburgh’s investment policy consultation, I raise some critical questions about why a university should affirm, as ours does, a commitment to promoting economic growth.  I suggest that there could be … Continue reading

Posted in global justice, responsible investment, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Academic Freedom and Social Responsibility

The University of Edinburgh is currently consulting on its Responsible Investment policy. One of the issues that arises concerns potential tensions between core academic values and principles of social responsibility.  This is the focus for the first of a projected … Continue reading

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On divestment, double-think, and the authority of received (un-)wisdom

Yale University is about to hold a referendum on whether to divest its endowment from fossil fuels.  Having recently blogged on that subject from here in Edinburgh, and coincidentally having also touched on it in an address at Yale a … Continue reading

Posted in responsible investment, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Should universities divest from fossil fuels?

Divestment from fossil fuels is the focus of a campaign among students and other civil society groups that is gathering momentum – and faster, it seems, even than previous campaigns that targeted apartheid, tobacco and arms manufacturers.  Universities are among … Continue reading

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Edinburgh University withdraws drones investment: what next?

The University of Edinburgh’s recent withdrawal of its £1.2M investment in a manufacturer of parts for US drones was praised by many, but also criticised by some.  Did the University do the right thing?  What, if anything, does the logic … Continue reading

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