Trends in Responsible Investment

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A growing segment, new opportunities for your practice

The institutional market is often a leading indicator of trends in the retail market. Moreover, retail investors are also increasingly aware of sustainable development issues, and most are ready to invest a portion of their portfolios in RIfootnote 1 .

Get your clients ahead of trends by talking to them about RI solutions.

  • 73% of investors want their advisors to discuss RI.footnote 1
  • 31% of investors have discussed RI with their advisor.footnote 1
  • Responsible investment (RI) assets under management in Canada represent $2.9 TRILLION.footnote 2
  • RI mutual funds and ETFs have experienced a 330% growth in assets under management between 2017 and 2022, more than 10 times that of the overall industry.footnote3
  • 195 countries and territories have signed the Paris Agreement on climate change.footnote 4
  • 84% of investors said they are as likely or more likely to choose RI than they were a year ago.footnote 1

Responsible investing that also aims to deliver competitive potential returns

RI solutions offer your clients the opportunity to seize the growth potential of high-quality companies that are leading the way in the transition to a more sustainable economy. Furthermore, they can position you as the trusted advisor with cutting-edge yet disciplined strategies for tomorrow’s markets. The following data show that RI/ESG strategies can generate potential returns that are on par with or better than traditional investments.footnote 5

  • Don’t compromise on return potential!

    • +1000 studies

    An analysis of more than 1,000 studies published between 2015 and 2020 concluded that for the majority of them, the performance of RI was equal to or better than the performance of traditional investment.footnote 6

RI: promote your growth in your practice

Millennials, women and university-educated individuals are among the many high-potential market segments for RI. The market is experiencing significant growth in specific regions in Canada as well, notably Quebec and British Columbia.


Millennials are the biggest segment of Canada’s working population.footnote 7

80% of respondents aged 18-34 strongly or somewhat agreed they would like to be informed about RI.footnote 1


An estimated $900 billion will be inherited by Canadian women by 2026.footnote 8

span class="emphasis">76% of women are interested in RI.footnote 1

69% feel a sense of urgency to invest responsibly.footnote 19

Be proactive

Help clients take action today. Recommend Desjardins’s industry-leading responsible investment solutions.

Materials and training

Learn more about RI

Want to speak to a regional sales director about our investment solutions?

  1. Ipsos-RIA. 2022 RIA Investor Opinion Survey - External link. Opens in a new window.
  2. The Responsible Investment Association (RIA). 2023 Canadian RI Trends Report - Responsible Investment Association ( - External link. Opens in a new window..
  3. The Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC). 2019 - External link. Opens in a new window. and 2022 - External link. Opens in a new window. Investment Funds Reports.
  4. United Nations. 7. d) Paris Agreement: Paris, 12 December 2015. - External link. Opens in a new window. November 4, 2016, p. XXVII 7D. Environment 1. [cited May 4, 2023].
  5. Friede, Gunnar et al. ESG & Financial Performance: Aggregated Evidence from More Than 2,000 Empirical Studies. - External link. Opens in a new window. Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, in Taylor & Francis Online, 2015. [cited June 30, 2022]. doi: 10.1080/20430795.2015.1118917.
  6. Whelan, Tensie, et al. ESG and Financial Performance: Uncovering the Relationship by Aggregating Evidence from 1,000 Plus Studies Published between 2015-2020. - External link. Opens in a new window. NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business and Rockefeller Asset Management, 2021. (cited June 30, 2022).
  7. Statistics Canada, A generational portrait of Canada’s aging population from the 2021 census - External link. Opens in a new window.. Release date: April 27, 2022, Cited May 17, 2023.
  8. IPC Private Wealth. Women and Wealth: The changing face of wealth in Canada and its implications for financial advisors, - External link. Opens in a new window. 2018. (cited June 30, 2022).
  9. Woll, Lisa. "Women and Sustainable Investing: Driving Assets and Benefitting from a Gender-Lens Approach." - External link. Opens in a new window. Green Money, April 2019. [cited June 30, 2022].