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Stakeholder capitalism: More talk than action?

High Pay Centre and CIPD report launch on employee-related metrics in CEO pay packages.

Date/time: Thursday 3 December 2020, 13:00 – 14:30

Speakers:

Luke Hildyard, Executive Director, High Pay Centre (Chair)

Corinne Carr, Founder, PeopleNet

Scarlett Brown, Policy Consultant, CIPD

Rachel Kay, Researcher, High Pay Centre

In the past two years stakeholder capitalism has gone from being a relatively fringe idea to a concept championed by the Business Roundtable, Davos and the World Economic Forum. Covid-19 has only added momentum to this trend, through increasing the focus on how companies treat their employees, whether through pay and job security or healthy and safety conditions.While prior to 2020 the ‘s’ in ESG, had been perceived as of lower importance to investors and companies, this appears to be changing rapidly – and there have been no shortage of column inches dedicated to the matter over the past few months.

Against this backdrop the High Pay Centre and CIPD are putting out new research looking at whether CEO pay incentives reflect these new trends. What our research has shown is that FTSE 100 CEO pay plans still overwhelmingly reward returns to shareholders rather than good employment practices.

This suggests that on this issue reality has still not caught up with rhetoric. But is this due to a lack of concern, or are other barriers standing in the way? What can be done to change this? And are there reasons to be optimistic?