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ESG Learning Pathways

A micro-credentialing approach to gaining mastery towards your ESG learning and development goals.

 

“95% of millennials are interested in sustainable investing”

Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing: Sustainable Signals — The Individual Investor Perspective (2019)

THE BUILDING BLOCKS TO ESG LEARNING

The four ESG pathways below are Alpha’s building blocks to ESG learning. Each pathway (or level) is broken down into further modules enabling you to pick the relevant courses across all levels that are aligned to your business.

Where a bespoke adaptation of these courses are required, have a discussion with our team of experts.

LEVEL ONE: FUNDAMENTALS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide participants with an introduction to ESG Investing, the evidence supporting it and familiarity with the stakeholders influencing practice.

 

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should:

  • Understand the concept of ESG investing
  • Understand the “E”, “S” and “G” of ESG
  • Be aware of the how ESG has developed over time in regulation and AUM
  • Be able to make the case for ESG investing and bust some enduring myths
  • Understand how ESG issues can deceive or hurt investors
  • Understand the decision making process on what is ESG compliant behaviour, and the parties leading these decisions at a supranational level
  • Be aware of the styles of ESG Investing, including drawbacks.

Level two: FACTORS

Level two is broken down into three courses that delve deeper into each of the three ESG factors – environmental, social and governance.

environmental FACTORS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an understanding of the Environmental issues that are addressed by ESG investing and how these are quantified by data vendors.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should

  • Understand the environmental issues addressed by ESG frameworks.
  • Understand the data typically disclosed by companies under the SASB, GRI, TCFD and CFP frameworks.
  • Be aware of how data providers and ratings agencies score the data.

social FACTORS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an understanding of the Social issues that are addressed by ESG investing and how these are quantified by data vendors.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should

  • Understand the social issues addressed by ESG frameworks.
  • Understand the data typically disclosed by companies under the SASB, GRI, TCFD and CFP frameworks.
  • Be aware of how alternative data can supplement “s” considerations.
  • Be aware of how data providers and ratings agencies score the data.

GOVERNANCE FACTORS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an understanding of the Governance issues that are addressed by ESG investing and how these are quantified by data vendors.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should

  • Understand the need for corporate governance
  • Be aware of authoritative sources of governance advice and differences in International norms.
  • Be aware of how ownership structures can impact the listed shareholder
  • Understand the role of an auditor.
  • Be aware of the key criteria assessed by third party data providers.

LEVEL THREE: SOLUTIONS

Level three is broken down into three courses providing learners with an understanding of the concepts, data sources and reporting, stock selection and screening, ESG ETFs, smart beta and fixed income, and beyond traditional funds.

CONCEPTS, DATA AND REPORTING

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide participants with an understanding of the key ESG frameworks from Supranational and other sources, the disclosure frameworks for corporate reporting and available data sources.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should,

  • Understand the key ESG frameworks from Supranational bodies.
  • Recognize the challenge of collecting data on ESG.
  • Understand the status quo of corporate reporting and ongoing initiatives to improve.
  • Be aware of the analytical options for ESG, from manual review of company data to AI analysis of newsfeeds.
  • Understand the leaders in the ESG data marketplace.

STOCK SELECTION AND SCREENING

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide participants with conceptual and practical understanding of how ESG can be incorporated into stock screening and selection.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should,

  • Understand the differences between an exclusion-based approach, a best-in-class approach and an integrated approach.
  • Be aware of the most common excluded areas and be able to apply exclusion concepts to benchmarks and portfolios.
  • Be aware of techniques that can minimize the distortion arising from an exclusion-based approach.

ESG ETFS, SMART BETA AND FIXED INCOME

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an overview of the ways to implement an ESG approach beyond the scope of a traditional active equity fund.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should

  • Be aware of the indices that underlie passive implementations of ESG.
  • Understand the environment for passive and smart beta implementation of ESG.
  • Be aware of ESG solutions for corporate debt and fixed income solutions.

BEYOND TRADITIONAL FUNDS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an overview of the investment opportunities that go beyond a traditional equity or fixed income fund.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should

  • Understand the engagement process.
  • Understand the concept of Impact Investing.
  • Understand innovation in green infrastructure funds.
  • Understand the concept of Green bonds.

LEVEL FOUR: STRATEGIES

Level four is offers three courses focusing on the quantitative aspects of ESG, value investing and deep valuation.

VALUE INVESTING

Course Synopsis

The course is aimed at those marketing to value investors or those investing or advising on fund selection.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should,

  • Explain the philosophy of value investing, its history and key proponents.
  • Differentiate between investment styles and also sub-styles of value investors, including Governance.
  • Understand the empirical evidence of value investing and the theoretical framework.
  • Examine the reasons why companies become ‘cheap’ and how they may revert.
  • Construct a value portfolio and consider how the decisions made will impact the risk and return profile across the cycle.

QUANTITATIVE ASPECTS

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide participants with an understanding the academic and industry evidence supporting an ESG approach and the quantitative impact of including ESG within an asset allocation.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should,

  • Be aware of recent performance data for ESG funds.
  • Understand some of the challenges in isolating ESG performance.
  • Understand key academic studies that review ESG approaches.
  • Review ESG in the context of correlation and a portfolio approach.

DEEP VALUATION

Course Synopsis

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to cash flow return based valuation modelling covering both theory and a practitioner’s insight.  The course is suitable both for those who will be using proprietary CFROI tools and those seeking to include elements into their own ESG valuation models.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should,

  • Critically appraise common valuation approaches and understand the impact of different approaches on ESG stock selection across the cycle.
  • Understand the key adjustments made to company accounts under a cash flow return based approach.
  • Develop storytelling techniques based on growth in returns, asset growth & productivity and valuation
  • Understand the analytical tools that allow stocks to be ranked & screened, and a fair value to be deduced
  • Be aware of some of the key ‘behind the scenes’ issues that can have a significant impact on the valuation.

what is micro-credentialing?

Also known as a digital badge, nano degree, micro-certification, web badge, mini degree and open badge, micro-credentials are mini learning qualifications that are becoming essential to professional skillsets.

This new approach to professional development provides learners with authenticated, online qualifications that represent a skill or ability and are generally transferrable.

Micro-credential courses enable learners to develop and improve a skill within a particular industry through bite-sized learning whilst embracing the need for both hard and soft skills in an constantly evolving environment.

CONTACT US

To discuss your ESG learning solutions with us and learn how we can support you, fill out the form below or contact [email protected].

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