Canadian Responsible Investments Surpass $2 Trillion

October 26th, 2018

For the first time, a majority of Canadian assets are incorporating environmental, social and corporate governance issues

TORONTO – October 24, 2018 – The 2018 Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report reveals that responsible investment (RI) is continuing to experience rapid growth in Canada. The biennial report, released today by the Responsible Investment Association (RIA), tracks investments that incorporate environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) criteria.

According to the latest available data, assets in Canada managed using one or more RI strategies increased from $1.51 trillion at the end of 2015 to $2.13 trillion as at December 31, 2017. This represents a 41.6% increase in RI assets under management over two years.

Responsible investing now accounts for 50.6% of Canadian assets under management, up from 37.8% two years earlier. This growing market share shows that Canadian investors increasingly view ESG factors as important components of investment decisions.

“Surpassing the fifty percent threshold marks a major milestone in the history and development of responsible investing in Canada,” said Dustyn Lanz, CEO of the Responsible Investment Association. “Investors in Canada and around the world increasingly recognize that a company is more than just the numbers, and incorporating ESG factors into investment decisions can help to identify resilient, well managed companies that outperform over the long term.”

“We’re very proud to have NEI Investments sponsor the RI Trends Report,” said Fred Pinto, SVP, Head of Asset Management at Aviso Wealth. “The rapid growth of RI assets affirms what we’ve believed for years – that responsible investing has a place in the investment mainstream and that Canadians are, in fact, responsible investors at their core.”


  • $2.13 trillion in RI assets under management as at December 31 st , 2017.
  • 41.6% growth in RI assets over a two-year period.
  • RI represents 50.6% of Canada’s investment industry, up from 37.8% two years ago.
  • Retail RI mutual fund assets increased from $8.26 billion to $11.07 billion, or 34% over two years.
  • The most prominent RI strategies by AUM are: (1) ESG integration, (2) shareholder engagement, (3) norms-based screening and (4) negative screening.
  • Survey respondents reported the top four reasons for considering ESG factors are: (1) managing risk, (2) improving returns over time, (3) meeting client/beneficiary demand, and (4) fulfilling fiduciary duty.
  • 87% of respondents expect moderate to high levels of growth in RI over the next two years.

View the full report here:

About the Canadian RI Trends Report
The Responsible Investment Association (RIA) publishes the Canadian Responsible Investment
Report on a biennial basis to understand and assess the characteristics of responsible
investment in Canada. Researchers collected survey data from 106 investment managers and asset owners. This data was supplemented by publicly-available sources such as annual reports. The researchers avoided double counting by subtracting approximately $673 billion in RI assets which overlapped between external managers and funds of funds.

About the Responsible Investment Association
The Responsible Investment Association (RIA) is Canada’s industry association dedicated to responsible investment (RI). Members include mutual fund companies, financial institutions, asset management firms, advisors, consultants, investment research firms, asset owners, individual investors and others interested in RI. Our members believe that the incorporation of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into the selection and management of investments can provide superior risk adjusted returns and positive societal impact.

Media Enquiries
Nick Buccheri,
Manager, Communications & Digital Media
Responsible Investment Association
+1(416) 461-6042 x5

Kira Smylie
Media Manager
Aviso Wealth
T 416.933.6263
M 416.209.2761