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Should Environment, Social and Governance Influence Investment Decisions? A Debate.

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  • Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center, and Online
October 24 debate information and speaker pictures

In partnership with the Ed Snider Center for Enterprise and Markets at the Robert H Smith School of Business, the Steamboat Institute Campus Liberty Tour is proud to present a compelling debate featuring Michael Faulkender, Ph.D., Professor of Finance, University of Maryland; Former Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy at the US Department of Treasury in the Trump Administration and Desiree Fixler, Sustainable Finance Professional & ESG Expert. Moderated by Gerard Baker, Editor-At-Large of The Wall Street Journal.

The focus is on teaching students – and all who attend – how to think, not what to think.

Steamboat Institute’s Campus Liberty Tour debates are shining examples of robust but civilized discourse, with an emphasis on critical thinking skills. We cannot maintain our democratic republic without a populace capable of critical thinking and civilized discourse.

In recent years businesses, consumers and investors have demonstrated an interest in business practices going beyond how goods and services are bought and sold. Environmental, Social and Governance, or ESG, practices and policies of a company cover a wide range of activities that customers, investors and employees care about - for example:

· What is the environmental impact of the company?

· How does the company treat its employees or suppliers?

· Does the company have ethical business practices?

Incorporation of ESG principles by companies can be commendable, but at its worst the practice has some companies accused of greenwashing and virtue-signaling just to sell a new product.

Those investors who care about the impact that the companies they fund have on the world, sometimes evaluate investments based on ESG criteria in addition to generally accepted financial risk measures. ESG covers subjective criteria that not even ESG advocates can agree on, but despite this the global market for ESG investment products has grown from $19 trillion in 2014 to a projected $55 trillion in 2022. Come hear from our expert speakers and better understand the implications of considering ESG in investment decision making.


Debate at Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center Orem Ballroom will also be live streamed. Registration required for attendance and to receive viewing link.


Ed Snider Center for Enterprise and Markets

For disability accommodations, please contact Kristen Erdman at

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