In our Responsible Investment service area, we advise and assist public and private financial institutions to implement various aspects of human rights and environmental due diligence in line with international norms including the IFC Performance Standards, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. A particular speciality we bring to our work with financial institutions is supporting them to integrate Just Transition concepts into their policies, procedures and practices.
Our clients include a range of public and private financial institutions such as banks and lenders, funds, institutional investors, asset managers, and development finance institutions.
We specialise in advising financial institutions about the management of human rights and environmental risks in client and investee supply chains relevant for the Just Transition, in particular renewable energy technology supply chains.
Julie Schindall, Director of Responsible Sourcing and Responsible Investment, leads our Responsible Investment team.
Types of support we provide to clients in this service area include:
- Strategy, policies and procedures
- Just Transition
- Risk assessment and prioritisation of risks
- Client and investee engagement
- Transparency and disclosure
- Access to remedy
Strategy, policies and procedures
- Analysis and recommendations of how to strengthen (enhanced) due diligence policies and procedures to more effectively manage human rights risks connected with clients and investees, particularly in renewable energy technology supply chains
- Advice and thought partnership to develop an internal white paper about a financial institution’s Just Transition strategy
- Moderation and support in conceptual development of ABN AMRO's annual human rights conference in 2022, focused on financial institutions' role in the Just Transition
- Supporting ING Bank on their journey to integrate Just Transition concepts more systematically across its policies, procedures and practices.
Risk assessment and prioritisation of risks
- Due diligence on ESG risks associated with clients and investees, particularly those active in the renewable energy sector
- Design and facilitation of a consultative process regarding how financial institutions as a sector can strengthen assessment of human rights risks of their clients and investees doing business in places where civic space is restricted, and access to reliable information is poor | Levin Sources authored a publication with five financial institutions sharing insights and ideas from this process. Read it here.
- Advice on identifying salient human rights issues in a financial institution’s procurement of goods and services (its own supply chain)
Client and investee engagement
- Co-authorship of a guidance document for clients and investees regarding the implementation of human rights due diligence in the supply chain
- Advising on and participating in engagement conversations with investees regarding their human rights and environmental risk management
Transparency and disclosure
- Support to develop and deliver disclosure about financial institutions’ human rights risks and impacts, and their efforts to effectively prevent and address them (human rights due diligence) | See examples: ABN AMRO Bank
- Levin Sources supported ING Bank over its past two human rights due diligence reporting cycles, serving as expert advisor and technical reviewer for drafts. Bringing our expertise in reporting on human rights due diligence in line with the UNGP Reporting Framework, Levin Sources helped ING identify opportunities to increase transparency of reporting and reflect both progress as well as challenges in the Bank’s due diligence using understandable and straightforward language. ING Human Rights report 2022/2023; Human Rights Review 2021/2022
Access to remedy
- Co-development of information and communication material to explain and win internal (including C-Suite level) and external support of and use for a remedy mechanism for people negatively affected by a financial institution’s client companies.