Previous winners of the Investor Responsibility Research Center Institute Research Award are as follows:

  • 2015 Award: Beyond Divestment: Using Low Carbon Indexes: The winning practitioner research paper provides an actionable roadmap for institutional investors trying to navigate a financially viable path for managing carbon risk. The research provides a new framework for evaluating ways to reduce exposure to both current and potential future carbon-related assets. The research is authored by a team of researchers at MSCI – Remy Briand, Linda-Eling Lee, Sébastien Lieblich, Véronique Menou and Anurag Singh. Download the research here.
  • 2015 Award: Passive Investors, Not Passive Owners: The winning academic research paper demonstrates that while passive investors – such as those that invest through index funds – are not active owners in the traditional sense of accumulating or selling shares so as to exert influence over managers and their choices, they are far from passive owners. Instead, the research finds that passively managed mutual funds, and the institutions that offer them, use their large voting blocs to exercise voice and exert influence on firms’ governance.  The authors include Ian R. Appel, Ph.D., assistant professor of finance at the Carroll School of Management at Boston College; Todd A. Gormley, Ph.D., assistant professor of finance at The Wharton School; and Donald B. Keim, professor of finance and director of the Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Download the research here.
  • 2015 research papers receiving Honorable Mention recognition are:
    • Does Hedge Fund Activism Lead to Short-Termism? Evidence from Corporate Innovation by Alon Brav (Duke University), Wei Jiang (Columbia University), Song Ma (Duke University) and Xuan Tian (Indiana University).
    • Active Ownership by Elroy Dimson (London Business School; University of Cambridge), Oguzhan Karakas (Boston College) and Xi Li (Temple University).
    • Investment Implications of Environment, Social, and Governance Sustainability: Evidence from Short Selling by Archana Jain (Rochester Institute of Technology), Pankaj K. Jain (University of Memphis) and Zabihollah Rezaee (University of Memphis).
    • Hedging Climate Risk by Mats Andersson (AB4), Patrick Bolton (Columbia Business School), and Frédéric Samamaw (SWF Research Initiative).
    • Public vs Private Provision of Governance: The Case of Proxy Access by Tara Bhandari (U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission), Peter Iliev (Pennsylvania State University) and Jonathan Kalodimos (Oregon State University).
    • Does Voluntary Disclosure Of Climate Change Risk Signal Overall Firm Risk? Evidence From Financial Reporting Quality And Firm-Level Investment
    • Activity by Shira Cohen (Temple University)
    • Valuing the Vote: The Impact of Proxy Voting on SBA Portfolio Holdings by the Florida State Board of Administration.
  • 2014 Award: Informed Options Trading prior to M&A Announcements: Insider Trading? by Patrick Augustin, Assistant Professor of Finance, McGill University; Menachem Brenner, Research Professor of Finance at New York University Stern School of Business; and Marti G. Subrahmanyam, Charles E. Merrill Professor of Finance, Economics and International Business, New York University Stern School of Business. Download the research here.
  • 2014 Award: Playing it Safe? Managerial Preferences, Risk, and Agency Conflicts by Todd A. Gormley, Assistant Professor of Finance at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania; and David Matsa, Associate Professor of Finance at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
  • 2013 Academic Award: Lucian Bebchuk of Harvard Law School, Alma Cohen of Tel-Aviv University Economics Department, and Charles Wang of Harvard Business School for Learning and the Disappearing Association between Governance and Returns. The study shows how financial markets have learned over time to appreciate the significance of certain governance provisions, and to factor these provisions into market prices and earnings forecasts.
  • 2013 Practitioner Award: Edward Waitzer, partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP in Toronto and director of the Hennick Centre for Business and Law at York University, and to Douglas Sarro, a student at Osgoode Hall Law School for The Public Fiduciary: Emerging Themes in Canadian Fiduciary Law for Pension Trustees. The research argues that evolving trends in fiduciary responsibility will impose public and inter-generational obligations of trustees.
  • 2012 Academic Award: Professor Menachem Brenner and Dr. Yehuda Izhakian of New York University’s Stern School of Business for Asset Pricing and Ambiguity: Empirical Evidence, which examines how stock prices are impacted by ambiguity, the unknown probabilities that generate risk as opposed to marketplace volatility.
  • 2012 Practitioner Award: Steve Lydenberg for research Reason, Rationality and Fiduciary Duty, which examines the ability to understand the real world implications of investment decisions rather than just short-term financial implications.