Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS), an influential proxy advisory firm, has launched its annual policy survey to inform its benchmark voting policies for 2020 and beyond. In an effort to streamline the process, ISS provided this year’s questions in a single survey. ISS invites input from institutional investors, companies, corporate directors and other market participants.
The topics in this year’s survey cover a broad array of issues, including board gender diversity, director overboarding, board leadership structure, multiclass capital structure sunset provisions and director accountability for failure to report on climate change risk. For example, in regards to board gender diversity, ISS is soliciting input on potential mitigating factors to forestall a negative vote on nominating committee chairs of all-male boards beginning in 2020.
This year’s survey will close at 5 p.m. EST on August 9, 2019. Once ISS has analyzed the submitted responses, there will be a public comment period on proposed policy changes before the changes are finalized.