Two days after the LA Times ran two articles questioning why the Gates Foundation invests in companies that “contravene its good works,” the foundation announced it will review its investments with an eye towards social responsibility.
Excellent. If the 800 pound gorilla of charitable foundations focuses on socially responsible investing, then it sets an example for others. That the Gates Foundation responded so quickly to the Times articles is commendable. Let’s hope they move decisively to socially responsible investing. The article notes that other major foundations are also planning the same type of reviews.
During the end days of apartheid in South Africa, many foundations and funds refused to invest in South African companies, something which unquestionably put pressure on their government to change.