What is a responsible endowment?

A:

The Responsible Endowments Coalition defines a responsible endowment as one that:

  1. Integrates the community’s values, institutional policies, and beliefs that emanate from the school’s mission statement into its investing;
    and
  2. Demonstrates intergenerational equity and responsibility to stable, sustainable returns, not generated through gambling on destructive, risky, or socially or environmentally unsustainable investments — by fully fulfilling its fiduciary duty. (See “What is fiduciary responsibility?”).

Colleges and universities invest a combined total of over $400 billion in the United States, and as constituents of these institutions, REC believes that stakeholders in higher education hold a unique power, privilege, and responsibility to ensure that the ramifications of these investments are as responsible and sustainable as possible.

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