Initiatives and membership of organisations

As one of Germany’s largest asset managers, we are aware of our responsibility and have accepted the challenge of helping to actively shape a future-proof environment for investments.

We promote the acceptance and implementation of sustainability principles within the investment industry. That is why Union Investment is an active member of various associations and initiatives involved in sustainability matters.

Membership of organisations

Union Investment belongs to various organisations as a way of supporting sustainable investments:

PRI – Principles for Responsible Investment

The Principles for Responsible Investment are six principles developed by international institutional investors under the auspices of the UNEP Finance Initiative and the UN Global Compact. These six principles serve as a guideline for investors to understand the impact of responsible investment and to take it into account in their decision-making. Supporters of this initiative commit to abide by these six principles. The principles are seen as a corset for implementing the 10 principles of the UN Global Compact in the supporters' individual investment strategies. Union Investment committed itself to these principles in 2010.

UN Global Compact

The vision of the UN Global Compact is to pave the way for a sustainable and inclusive global economy that brings lasting benefits to people, communities and markets. The UN Global Compact helps companies conduct their business responsibly by incorporating the ten principles on human rights, labour standards, environmental protection and anti-corruption into their strategies and activities, and by taking strategic action to achieve broader societal goals such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Sustainable Investment Forum

The Forum Nachhaltige Geldanlagen (FNG) has been the professional association for sustainable investments in Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein and Switzerland since 2001. Its aim is to provide the general public and decision-makers from politics, business and science with up-to-date and comprehensive information and thus to increase awareness of sustainable investments in the financial sector and among the general public. The aim is to strengthen the networking of the relevant actors and to demonstrate the positive steering effect of sustainable investments for society and the environment. At the same time, the aim is to help shape the political, legal and economic framework. Union Investment has been an active member of the Sustainable Investment Forum since 2010.


EUROSIF is the professional association for sustainable investments at the European level and thus the federation of eight local European professional associations. As the overarching body, EUROSIF has developed a transparency register as a requirement for sustainable investment. Only companies that meet these requirements and are listed as a Transparent Company can subsequently receive further local sustainability seals.

PRI Montréal Pledge

By signing the Montréal Carbon Pledge, investors commit to measuring and publishing the carbon footprint of their investment portfolio annually. The pledge was adopted in Montréal on 25 September 2014 and is supported by the organisations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI).

Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)

CDP is an independent, non-profit, international organisation founded in London in 2000. In partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and 767 institutional investors, CDP maintains the world's largest database of company-relevant climate information. The results serve capital market participants as information for the evaluation of CO2 emissions, climate risks and CO2 reduction targets of companies. In Germany, the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) is a long-standing strategic partner of the CDP. The CDP's overarching goal is to make CO2 emissions transparent and tangible in order to reduce them sustainably in the long term.

Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI)

The Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI) is the only organisation in the world dedicated to expanding the market for sustainable bonds. As a non-profit organisation, it aims to create the largest, most liquid and sustainable bond market possible, thereby reducing the cost of further climate protection projects in both developed and emerging markets. It supports investments in assets that promote a low-emission, resource-efficient and climate-resilient economy.

Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI)

The Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI) was launched in January 2017 as a joint initiative of the Church of England and the Environment Agency Pension Fund (EAPF). The aim of the TPI is to analyse the transition to a low-carbon economy - as envisaged in the Paris Agreement - and to examine the impact on companies in carbon-intensive sectors. As a supporter of the initiative, Union Investment will address these analyses and findings in engagement dialogues.

Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)

The Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) was established by the Financial Stability Board (FSB) with the aim of developing voluntary and consistent reporting on climate-related financial risks. Consistent reporting enables companies to share decision-relevant information with investors, lenders, insurers and other stakeholders. Access to comparable and reliable data should improve the assessment, pricing and management of climate-related financial risks.


LuxFLAG is a non-profit organisation founded in July 2006 to support the financing of sustainable development as an international and independent labelling agency. In order to promote interest in sustainable investments, LuxFLAG awards transparent labels to investment funds. The aim of the label is to provide investors with the assurance that the labelled funds actually invest in sustainable investments.

International working groups in which Union Investment is represented

ICMA Social Bonds Working Group

The aim of the working group is to promote the growth of the social bond market through the further development of a guideline and to develop a common framework for the use of social bonds.

DVFA Working Group Governance & Stewardship

The DVFA Governance & Stewardship Commission, which is composed of a majority of investor representatives and academics, promotes responsible interaction between companies and investors on the German capital market with the aim of promoting best practice in corporate governance and in the implementation of investors' fiduciary duties (stewardship). The Commission's activities include addressing current aspects of corporate governance and stewardship, participating in the development of standards and helping to shape relevant regulatory processes.

DVFA Commission Sustainable Investing

In November 2018, the newly constituted Sustainable Investing Commission met for the first time under the leadership of Dr. Henrik Pontzen, Union Investment, and Gunnar Friede, CIIA, CEFA, DWS. The commission deals with the development of sustainability standards and sees itself as DVFA's mouthpiece in the areas of regulation and education and training.

BVI Working Group Corporate Governance

The BVI Bundesverband Investment und Asset Management e.V. (BVI for short) is an association of capital investment companies founded in 1970. Its more than 100 members manage more than 3 trillion euros in mutual funds, special funds and asset management mandates. The BVI represents the interests of the German fund industry at national and international level. The German Fund Association BVI is the point of contact for politicians and supervisors on all issues relating to the German Investment Code.

Initiatives supported by Union Investment and collaborative engagement

Global Investor Statement on Climate Change

By signing the 2011 Global Investor Statement on Climate Change, Union Investment (along with 378 other investors worldwide) supports the call for uniform, long-term policies on climate change and clean energy ("investment-grade policies").

Net Zero Asset Managers initiative

The Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative is an international group of asset managers that aims to decarbonise their investment portfolios by 2050 at the latest and support the goal of a climate-neutral economy. This initiative is in line with global efforts to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

World Benchmarking Alliance

The World Benchmarking Alliance (WBA) was founded in 2018. The WBA has identified seven transformations that need to take place to put society and the global economy on a more sustainable path, making the SDGs achievable. To make these transformations a reality, the WBA is developing a set of benchmarks that rank and measure 2,000 of the world's most influential companies in terms of their contribution to the SDGs.

PRI labour standards in the value chain

In 2014, Union Investment joined the working group on improving working conditions in the agri-food industry. This working group was set up specifically for this purpose as part of the clearinghouse of the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) organisation.

Climate Action 100+

Climate Action 100+ is a five-year initiative of investors with the aim of systematically engaging large CO2 emitters and other globally active companies in the energy transition and in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement. Participating investors call on companies to reduce their emissions, integrate climate change more closely into corporate governance and further develop reporting on climate-related financial risks.