Update: 2018 Workers’ Capital Conference Program

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The 2018 Workers’ Capital Conference will be held in San Francisco, California on Monday, September 10 from 12:30 pm - 5:30 pm and Tuesday, September 11, from 8:30 am - 4:00 pm.

The draft conference agenda is available here. Please note that the agenda is subject to change.

Our conference keynote is Lenore Palladino, Senior Economist and Policy Counsel at the Roosevelt Institute. An expert on inequality and finance, Dr. Palladino’s most recent thought-provoking work examines how stock buybacks artificially boost share prices, rewarding shareholders and executives to the detriment of workers and the broader economy.

The 2018 Conference will include the following panels:

  • Private equity: This session will explore private equity, focusing on its implications for workers and pension funds. It will begin with an overview of the asset class, outlining key considerations for trustees in the context of a critical examination of the asset class’ past and expected future performance. The session will then turn to the specific implications of private equity investments on workers and communities.
  • Asset manager accountability on social issues: For asset owners, the task of establishing accountability from asset managers on social issues is fraught with challenges. This session will report on the CWC’s new asset manager accountability initiative while examining gaps between discourse and action, discussing asset owner experiences in approaching asset managers and exploring strategies moving forward.
  • Infrastructure: This session will discuss concrete initiatives that seek to help trustees reconcile pension board decision making with the general interest of the trade union movement as they pertain to this asset class including the CWC Trustee Guidance Note on Pension Fund Investment, the ACTU labour standards code for infrastructure asset managers and the development of responsible contractor policies in the US.
  • Fees in the investment chain: The transparency of costs paid by asset owners has gained increasing attention and scrutiny from regulators and governments in recent years. This session will report on recent regulatory developments in Australia, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA and will chart a path to build the capacity of trustees and unions to seek better cost transparency.
  • The strategic role of investors in a Just Transition: Investor responses to climate change continue to gain momentum in the form of shareholder engagement, capital allocation decisions and policy dialogues. While the implications of the climate transition for workers and communities has not been embedded into the bulk of these investor responses, the concept of just transition is gaining ground. This session will take stock of progress and discuss ongoing initiatives.
  • Amazon and the logistics sector: Prime time for a global capital stewardship campaign: The logistics sector occupies an increasingly strategic position within the global economy, producing some of the world’s fastest growing and most powerful companies. These companies operate with impunity, employ a brutally exploitative labour model, and fight viciously to prevent unionization — all of which has sparked opposition across the globe. This session explores how two logistics companies – Amazon and XPO Logistics – operate, how workers and unions are fighting back, and what capital stewards can do to build that fight.

Registration