De-jargoned: Glossary of ESG terms

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There are currently 16 relevant ESG terms in this directory beginning with the letter I.
IEHN - Investor Environmental Health Network
This network of investment managers, advised by nongovernmental organizations, encourages companies to adopt policies to reduce and eliminate toxic chemicals in their products. [Source: First Affirmative Financial Network]

IIGCC - Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change
A forum for collaboration on climate change for investors. IIGCC provides investors with a collaborative platform to encourage public policies, investment practices, and corporate behaviour that address long-term risks and opportunities associated with climate change. [Source: Swiss Sustainable Finance]

IIRC - International Integrated Reporting Council
An international cross section of leaders from the corporate, investment, accounting, securities, regulatory, academic and standard-setting sectors and civil society. Promotes communication about value creation as the next step in the evolution of corporate reporting. [Source: Global Affairs Associates]

ILO - International Labour Organization
A United Nations agency that sets international labour standards and promotes social protection and work opportunities for all. ILO brings together governments, employers and workers of 187 member States to set labour standards, develop policies, and devise programs promoting decent work for all women and men. [Source: Global Affairs Associates]

ILO Conventions
ILO conventions encompass international labour standards which are integrated into legally binding international treaties, setting out basic principles and rights at work. Those legal instruments are ratified in all participating countries. The eight fundamental conventions cover the topics freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; the elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; the effective abolition of child labour; and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation. They are frequently used as the basis for exclusion and engagement approaches. [Source: Swiss Sustainable Finance]

Impact Investing
Impact investing refers to investments made with the intention to generate a measurable, beneficial social or environmental impact alongside a financial return. Impact investments provide private capital to address social and/or environmental issues. Impact investments can be made in both emerging and developed markets, and target a range of returns from below-market to above-market rates, depending upon the circumstances. Typically, these are investments in small companies or projects with clear social goals, providing them with capital they may not otherwise have accessed. [Source: Global Affairs Associates]

Independent Chairman
A chairman of the board who is not an executive (such as a current or former CEO). [Source: Stanford: Corporate Governance Research Initiative]

Independent Directors
Neither past nor present employees of the company or affiliated with it in any other way. In some jurisdictions those who serve on boards for a set period of time are no longer considered independent, even if they began their tenure in that category. [Source: Schroders]

Integrated Reporting
An integrated report (IR) combines a company's financial report and sustainability report in order to give a concise view about how an organisation’s strategy, governance, performance and prospects lead to the creation of value over the short, medium and long term. [Source: Swiss Sustainable Finance]

Integration / Mainstreaming
In the context of Sustainable Investment, this refers to ensuring that environmental, social and governance factors are given full consideration and research support, as an integral part of the investment decision-making process. This analysis therefore becomes fully integrated into the overall financial analysis of standard investment products. [Source: Swiss Sustainable Finance]

Interlocked (Connected or Networked) Boards
Companies whose senior executives sit reciprocally on each other’s boards: an executive of one firm sits on the board of another and an executive of the second firm sits on the board of the first. [Source: Stanford: Corporate Governance Research Initiative]

International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN)
An investor-led organization of governance professionals, ICGN’s mission is to inspire and promote effective standards of corporate governance to advance efficient markets and economies worldwide. [Source: Schroders]

International Integrated Reporting Framework
Created IIRC, the International Integrated Reporting Framework is used to accelerate the adoption of integrated reporting across the world. An integrated report is a concise communication about how an organization’s strategy, governance, performance and prospects, in the context of its external environment, lead to the creation of value in the short, medium and long term. [Source: Global Affairs Associates]

Investor Network on Climate Risk
Launched by Ceres, this network includes institutional investors, religious and labor funds, asset managers and socially responsible investment funds. Members actively engage with companies in their portfolios on climate and sustainability issues and advocate for strong climate and energy policies. [Source: First Affirmative Financial Network]

IPCC - Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
The IPCC was established jointly by the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Meteorological Organization in 1988. The purpose of the IPCC is to assess information related to all significant components of the issue of climate change by drawing upon hundreds of the world’s expert scientists as authors and thousands more as expert reviewers. IPCC releases periodic assessments of the scientific underpinnings for understanding global climate change and its consequences. The IPCC is looked to as the official advisory body to the world’s governments on the state of the science on climate change. [Source: Global Affairs Associates]

IRIS is a catalogue of generally accepted performance metrics that impact investors use to measure social, environmental, and financial success, evaluate deals, and improve the credibility of the impact investing industry. The catalogue is prepared by the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), a non-profit organisation dedicated to increasing the scale and effectiveness of impact investing. [Source: Swiss Sustainable Finance]


  1. Allianz Global Investors, ESG Glossary, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  2. First Affirmative Financial Network, Glossary of Responsible Investing Terms, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  3. Global Affairs Associates, ESG Glossary, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  4. Invesco Ltd., Glossary: Understanding ESG jargon, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  5. Nuveen, LLC., Glossary: Responsible investing, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  6. Schroders Investment Management North America Inc., Understanding sustainable investment and ESG investment terms, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  7. Stanford Graduate School of Business, Corporate Governance Research Initiative, Retrieved: September 12,2020
  8. Swiss Sustainable Finance, Glossary, Retrieved: September 12,2020

Disclaimer: This glossary is NOT intended to be an authoritative reference document. All information in this glossary is for educational use only. This glossary has been compiled based on public domain information available on the websites of the mentioned sources. While due care has been taken in compiling this glossary, ESGSense does not assume any liability for any inaccuracy or factual error. Any term or definition mentioned here does NOT constitute financial or investment advice. ESGSense assumes no liability for any financial decisions and/or investments made on the basis of information gained from this glossary.