Director, Governance & Sustainability Policy

New York, USA
May 02, 2021
May 05, 2021
Job Function
Industry Sector
Finance - General
Employment Type
Full Time

About this role

Team Description:

As an independent, fiduciary asset manager, BlackRock is committed to acting at all times in the best long-term interests of our clients. BIS plays a fundamental role in the activation of BlackRock's purpose of helping more and more people experience financial well-being. BIS advocates for sound corporate governance and business practices that deliver the sustainable, long-term financial returns that enable our clients to meet their investing goals. This objective informs our policy positions, corporate engagements and votes at shareholder meetings.

BIS is considered an investment function and is an important component of BlackRock's client value proposition. The team operates in eight offices across three regions - the Americas (New York and San Francisco); Europe, Middle East and Africa (London and Amsterdam); and Asia-Pacific (Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney).

BlackRock aims to take a common view in-house regarding our engagement and voting policies and uses the BIS group to develop, communicate and implement these policies across the 95 markets and approximately 15,000 shareholder meetings at which the firm votes on behalf of clients each year.

Role description:

The Director of Governance and Sustainability Policy will work in a lead role as part of a growing team, of currently over 50 specialists globally. He/she will work closely with the Managing Director or Global Institutional Relations and Policy to develop BIS' policy positions and thought leadership pieces on perpetual and emerging stewardship issues. He/she will play a key role in developing and maintaining BIS' corporate governance and sustainability positions that are communicated through our voting and engagement policies globally, in close collaboration with regional BIS teams, and will contribute to their implementation. He/she will apply corporate governance expertise to contribute to other policy-related content across BIS publications, including ad hoc thought leadership reports, topical commentaries, and standard publications for client consumption. The person in this role would work closely with colleagues in the Sustainable Investing and Global Public Policy teams on issues that overlap with their areas of responsibility. He/she will also partner with multiple corporate functions across BlackRock to stay aligned on BlackRock positioning on emerging trends and issues.

The role reports to the Managing Director, Global Institutional Relations and Policy and is based in New York.

Key Responsibilities:
  • Ensuring robust and relevant voting and engagement policies, in collaboration with the MD of Global Institutional Relations and Policy and regional teams
    • Apply corporate governance expertise, gained through direct involvement in corporate engagement and voting by proxy at shareholder meetings across multiple markets, in leading the annual policy review process. This involves working with regional teams to ensure voting guidelines address key voting issues, relevant KPIs and achieve the appropriate balance between global consistency with local relevance
    • Apply corporate governance expertise to contribute to the implementation of BIS' voting guidelines, particularly on complex or sensitive votes, to support quality analysis and consistent policy implementation
    • Monitor public policy developments and make recommendations for off-cycle policy updates or other communications on key issues arising
  • Provide policy insights to shape BIS communications, product strategy and client collateral
    • Research and analyze governance, environmental and social issues from an investment perspective and collaborate with the investment teams and other key internal stakeholders to share views
    • Contribute policy-related content to BIS publications and engage key external parties to gather feedback and additional insights
    • Work with the product strategy team to ensure that client collateral reflects the most up to date thinking and demonstrates BlackRock thought leadership
    • Contribute content to client-specific requests for information on our policy views
    • Contribute to ad hoc reports, commentaries or thought leadership pieces as required
    • Share responsibility with the BIS Executive Committee members for public representation of BlackRock's views and how the team's work benefits clients
  • Monitor emerging trends and issues and help shape BIS' policies
    • Undertake periodic 'horizon scanning' exercises with colleagues to identify key emerging trends that may impact BIS' work or policies
    • Use insights gained from research and engagement to advise on options for BIS' positions on emerging issues
  • Contribute to communications collateral
    • Shape the suite of published policies and suggest areas for research and thought leadership as necessary
    • Contribute to firm-wide publications (e.g. BlackRock Investment Institute and Global Public Policy papers)
    • Contribute to materials for internal training on the BIS team's policy positions and thought leadership and participate in training sessions as needed
    • Contribute to our library of speaking notes, internal playbook content and/or formal text for delivery, presentation decks and finalize transcripts of remarks on policy issues for publication as required
  • Coordinate with team members to support their submissions to public policy consultations
  • Coordinate with partners in other BlackRock businesses to ensure alignment of BIS positions with those taken elsewhere in the firm
  • Develop an external network to support a sound understanding of the policy debate, anticipate developments and communicate BlackRock's views
  • Coordinate communication with the BIS global oversight committee and, in conjunction with the Committee's chairman, ensure its members remain informed of policy developments and are equipped to fulfil their function to oversee stewardship related risk
  • Contribute to the management and development of the team, particularly in relation to policy, BIS' implementation and communications

The person in this role will have/be:
  • An undergraduate degree, ideally in finance, economics, accounting or related discipline, that contributed to the development of strong research and analytical skills
  • A postgraduate, CFA or MBA qualification would be an advantage
  • An understanding of and interest in corporate governance and sustainability issues as investment considerations
  • Seven to ten years in a corporate governance role at an investment firm or asset owner that involved engagement and voting, ideally across multiple markets
  • Exceptional business writing and communication skills
  • A proven track record in policy development and thought leadership, including coordinating views of multiple stakeholders
  • Fluency in and knowledge of investment management, economics and finance
  • The ability to understand complex issues and translate them into simple, actionable ideas for clients and other key stakeholders
  • Research and analytical capabilities
  • The ability to manage competing demands on their time and keep track of projects and deadlines
  • The ability to build and maintain successful relationships with colleagues across the firm and with external parties
  • The ability to work effectively and accurately under time pressure

Our benefits

To help you stay energized, engaged and inspired, we offer a wide range of benefits including a strong retirement plan, tuition reimbursement, comprehensive healthcare, support for working parents and Flexible Time Off (FTO) so you can relax, recharge and be there for the people you care about.

About BlackRock

BlackRock's purpose is to help more and more people experience financial well-being. As a fiduciary to investors and a leading provider of financial technology, we help millions of people build savings that serve them throughout their lives by making investing easier and more affordable.

For additional information on BlackRock, please visit | Twitter: @blackrock | LinkedIn:

BlackRock is proud to be an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, protected veteran status, and other statuses protected by law.

BlackRock will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest or conviction records in a manner consistent with the requirements of the law, including any applicable fair chance law.

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