The Shareholder Commons Publishes Portfolios on the Ballot 2024, an Investor Guide to Systems-First Proxy Voting

More than 60 shareholder initiatives seek to protect social, environmental, and economic systems that support diversified portfolios.

NORTHAMPTON, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In advance of the 2024 proxy season, The Shareholder Commons (TSC), a non-profit advocate for diversified investors, has published Portfolios on the Ballot 2024, the first publication specifically designed to help investors vote their proxies on a systems-first basis. Portfolios on the Ballot flags initiatives designed to protect the social and environmental systems that support all the companies in a diversified portfolio. In conjunction with the launch, TSC will hold a three-part webinar series starting on March 26th to highlight issues on the ballot and discuss how diversified investors can protect the value of their diversified portfolios this proxy season.

“This year, we have collected dozens of shareholder initiatives that aim to protect diversified investors’ common interests in protecting the systems that underlie a thriving economy,” says Rick Alexander, the CEO of The Shareholder Commons. “The sheer number of initiatives illustrates the growing interest of investors in addressing environmental and social issues from a systemic perspective. This reflects an evolution in shareholder stewardship away from a purely single company focus.”

Highlighted initiatives include action to:

Accelerate reductions in greenhouse gas emissions at companies including Illinois Tool Works (ITW) and Shell (SHEL).

Encourage responsible deep-sea mining at Tesla (TSLA) and General Motors (GM).

Improve oversight of the development of artificial intelligence at Meta Platforms (META) and Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL).

Address abuse of antimicrobials in supply chains at McDonalds (MCD) and Restaurant Brands International (QSR).

Provide workers with a living wage at Walmart (WMT), Target (TGT), Kroger (KR), The Home Depot (HD), and Amazon (AMZN).

Encourage fair treatment of workers, tax transparency, and equitable sick leave policies.

“Most investors own a broad range of securities, but individual companies sometimes pursue profits at the expense of their diversified shareholders,” said Alexander. “The proposals in Portfolios on the Ballot are designed to protect these shareholders by preserving the systems that support both the economy and their portfolios, but which are threatened by the social or environmental costs of certain corporate behavior.”

Global financial institutions representing more than $5.6 trillion in client assets are behind these actions. “Investors cannot sit on the sidelines when company practices threaten critical social and environmental systems,” says Sara E. Murphy, the Chief Strategy Officer of The Shareholder Commons. “Everyone’s portfolio depends on a thriving economy built upon those systems, and shareholders must use their rights to protect them.”

In an increasingly interdependent global economy, diversified shareholders must analyze the financial effect of companies’ social and environmental impacts on their entire portfolio. Portfolios on the Ballot highlights the ability of investors to steward the systems upon which the economy depends in the 2024 proxy season.

About The Shareholder Commons

The Shareholder Commons (TSC) is a non-profit organization that addresses social and environmental issues from the perspective of shareholders who diversify their investments to optimize risk and return. TSC’s advocacy focuses on the divergence that often emerges between a company’s interest in maximizing its cash flows over the long term and its shareholders’ interests in optimizing overall market returns.


Sophie Faris, Chief Operating Officer