Boston, MA & San Francisco, CA, August 8, 2012
– Tides and Trillium Asset Management, LLC (Trillium)  announce today the publication of a new white paper, Total Portfolio Activation – A Framework for Creating Social and Environmental Impact across Asset Classes.

Prepared by Tellus Institute, an interdisciplinary not-for-profit research and policy organization based in Boston, MA – with the guidance and close collaboration of Trillium and Tides – the paper provides concrete steps to help institutional investors begin working toward a fuller activation of their portfolio in support of their mission.

The basic insight that drives Total Portfolio Activation is that every investment across every asset class has social and environmental impacts—positive and negative. The new paper provides both a framework and a set of analytical tools to help mission-driven investors understand the specific impact opportunity set that can be pursued across every asset class in their portfolios.

In addition to wide-ranging research on the burgeoning field of sustainable, responsible, and impact investing, the authors relied on the advice and examples of numerous investors, investment officers, and fund managers who agreed to speak about their efforts to pursue investment impact, whether across their portfolios or within asset classes.

“As an organization that actively promotes change toward a healthy society founded on principles of social justice and broadly shared economic opportunity, Tides believes in the concept of Total Portfolio Activation—the idea that endowment and foundation investors have an opportunity and responsibility to leverage impact across all asset classes in alignment with their programmatic focus. We believe this report can be used as a guide for any mission-driven organization that is looking to align their investments with their programmatic goals and values,” said Melissa Bradley, CEO, Tides.

With case studies of The Oneida Trust, Equity Foundation and Dominican Sisters of Hope among others, the report provides specific examples of investors who have already activated assets for deeper social and environmental impact.

“For three decades Trillium has been committed to shareholder advocacy and public policy and has been pleased to see the growing attention given to impact investing. For organizations and individuals seeking greater impact and better alignment between their investment activities and their mission or values, there remains a pressing need for tools to help investors identify and seize opportunities to activate more of their assets for social and environmental benefit. We believe that this paper helps fill that gap”, said Matthew Patsky, CEO, Trillium Asset Management, LLC.

Total Portfolio Activation outlines four related areas of activity where opportunities for impact can be readily seized within each asset class and ten key steps that investors can take in order to implement the Total Portfolio Activation framework.

“Although most impact investing to date has been in private equity and debt, we found that opportunities to increase the potential for social and environmental impact exist across every asset class in a diversified portfolio, from public equities to real assets, from cash to venture capital,” noted Joshua Humphreys, fellow at Tellus Institute and lead author of the paper.  “Total Portfolio Activation provides a new framework to help investors identify their specific ‘impact opportunity set’ and re-allocate their assets to seize it.”

To download a copy of Total Portfolio Activation – A Framework for Creating Social and Environmental Impact across Asset Classes, click here.

For More Information:

Kate Byrne, Director of Marketing & Communications, Tides, (415) 561-7884, [email protected]

Randy Rice, External Communications, Trillium Asset Management, LLC, (617) 532-6680, [email protected]

Joshua Humphreys, Ph.D., Fellow, Tellus Institute, (617) 266-5400 x 18, [email protected]


About Tides

Tides partners with donors to increase and organize resources for positive social change, facilitating effective grant-making programs, creating opportunities for learning, and building community among donors and grantees.  We strengthen community-based nonprofit organizations and the progressive movement by providing an innovative and cost-effective framework for philanthropy.  Tides is a part of Tides Network, which brings together people, ideas, and resources to actively promote change toward a healthy and just society. For more information please visit

About Trillium Asset Management

With a history spanning three decades, Trillium is the oldest independent investment advisor focused exclusively on sustainable and responsible investing. Trillium manages over $1 billion in assets for clients including high net worth individuals, foundations, endowments, religious institutions, and other non-profits. A leader in shareholder advocacy and public policy work, Trillium works to deliver both impact and performance to our investors. For more information, please visit

About Tellus Institute

Tellus Institute is a nonprofit, interdisciplinary think tank in Boston pursuing a “Great Transition” to a future of enriched lives, environmental sustainability and social equity. Since its founding in 1976, the Institute has worked at every geographic level, bringing analytic rigor and a systemic, global perspective to a wide range of critical problems, from energy and environmental resource use to climate change, corporate responsibility and sustainable development.  Among the Institute’s current research and action initiatives are the Great Transition Initiative and major projects on global citizenship, finance and resilience, food systems and social equity, ownership design and impact investing.  For more information, please visit or follow the Institute on Twitter @TellusInstitute.