The SRI industry sits midway between:

  • an investment industry whose immediate inclination is to compete for proprietary advantage on behalf of themselves and their client
  • the advocates of sustainable development whose immediate inclination is to collaborate for the wider social good

We believe that the sharing of research and information could improve understanding of sustainable investment issues across the market – to the benefit of all.  However, we also recognise the importance of a competitive market in which organisations are rewarded for their willingness to invest in sustainability research capacity that develops competitive advantage through their ability to conduct proprietary investment analysis.

We have no wish to disrupt the delicate and fluid balance between competition and collaboration that the SRI industry maintains so carefully.

We therefore:

  • Limit the information that users can see on their competitors’ organisational profiles
  • Prohibit the use of information provided by other users to the competitive detriment of those users

The SRI-CONNECT approach

We recognise that many of the users of our network will be employees of companies in direct competition with one another in their respective markets.

To facilitate our goal of balancing the forces of competition and collaboration (and, where appropriate, enhancing them in the SRI industry), the site has been configured to restrict users’ ability to identify information which will give them a competitive advantage over their fellow users but without compromising their ability to engage in collaborative activity.

Profile information may not be used to the detriment of the profile owner

You must not use information found within SRI-CONNECT profiles to the reputational or commercial detriment of the owner of that profile.

Content must not be used to the detriment of the poster

SRI-CONNECT Network allows users, including competitors, to share information and research which can improve the industry’s overall understanding of sustainability and investment issues. The breadth and depth of Content available depends on voluntary contributions by posters.

Such Content should be used for its intended purpose – of improving understanding and research quality.

It is not acceptable to use the Content for marketing purposes (by highlighting inadequacies in the Poster’s capabilities) or to damage the Poster’s reputation.

It is, however, acceptable and encouraged for users to correct and enhance the Contributions of others – to drive forward the understanding of the whole industry.

Most information is visible to competitors

Most of the information you contribute to the SRI-CONNECT site may be seen by direct commercial competitors who also use the SRI-CONNECT site. This includes:

  • Information published within your personal profile
  • Information published within your employer organisation’s profile or that of the funds and indices that it manages
  • Content that is posted to the SRI Network – including Market Buzz
  • Content that is posted to SRI-kipedia

If you log on as an individual user, Content you publish on the site (whether via blogs, Market Buzz, SRI-kipedia etc) is not automatically protected from your competitors.

Information contributed to Discussion Groups is not automatically protected although the hosts of such groups may use ‘Privacy Settings’ to restrict access to the discussion in any way they choose.

Some information is protected

We recognise that organisations may wish to publish some information to suppliers, customers and partners but withhold it from competitors. For this reason, access to some of the most competitively-privileged information (contained within organisational profiles) is restricted to competitors.

Visibility on profiles is generally determined by the subscription level of the viewer: Unregistered browsers can view mini-profiles; registered users can view midi-profiles; subscribed members can view maxi-profiles.

However, access to the following aspects of organisational profiles is restricted due to competition considerations:

  • Asset manager users cannot view the following aspects of their competitors’ profiles:
    • Asset owner clients
    • Approach to company engagement
    • Stock focus list
  • Company users cannot view the following aspects of other company profiles:
    • Funds and investors
  • SRI research users cannot view the following aspects of their competitors’ organisational profiles:
    • Clients and projects
    • Fees and charges
    • Scope and focus of research
    • Data, news, screening and ratings
    • Issue research and integrated analysis capabilities
    • Services for companies
    • Other services
    • Stock coverage
    • Approach to company engagement
  • No-one can view a list of an individual’s stock interests (these can only be identified on a stock-by-stock basis by subscribed members conducting ‘Stock Interest’ searches)
  • No-one can view an asset manager’s list of Focus Stocks (these can only be identified on a stock-by-stock basis by subscribed members conducting ‘Stock Interest’ searches)

Anti-competitive behaviour must be avoided

You must not use the site to engage in anti-competitive practice – that is to say, any collaboration that disadvantages your customers.

No competitive detriment to SRI-CONNECT

You must also declare that you are not a competitor of or an employee of a competitor of SRI-CONNECT, using the site for the purpose of competing with SRI-CONNECT.

All users are required to declare that they are not accessing the SRI-CONNECT site and network for the purposes of obtaining information for use in competing directly with us; any user found to be a member of a company we consider to be a competitor of ours will be immediately banned from any further access to the site.