Feeds

Gates Foundation launches investment review

Good money for unethical companies?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Bill and Melinda Gates are reviewing policy at their philanthropic foundation after a newspaper investigation revealed it invested in corporations with questionable ethical records.

The LA Times discovered cash ploughed into oil companies which have been implicated in environmental disasters in the developing world. The paper questioned the apparent contradiction between the Foundation's aims battling poverty and HIV, and its investments in pharmaceutical companies which have been accused of obstructing provision of low cost drugs to poor countries.

In an interview with the Seattle Times, Gates Foundation chief Cheryl Scott said there would be a methodical review of the billions of dollars of shares it owns. She said the review would identify if "there are cases simply where the situation is so egregious it will cause us not to invest." The tobacco business is the only industry currently blacklisted by the gates Foundation.

Scott denied the move was a response to the public criticism of the Foundation, adding: "This has been an issue that has been top of line for a long time and will continue to be."

She said the Foundation tries to avoid ranking investments on their ethical record, preferring to focus on giving the money they make away. She said there would be room for much error and confusion in such judgments and "...divesting from companies would not have an effect commensurate with the resources we would divert to this activity."

The Foundation can be assured the results of its latest investment review will be closely scrutinised. At the moment the financial and philanthropic sides of the Foundation have remained separate. Part of the plan is to formalise oversight by the Gates's of the $35bn endowment, which is set to near-double with billions more from Warren Buffet.

Scott has posted a statement on the Foundation website here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Antarctic ice THICKER than first feared – penguin-bot boffins
Robo-sub scans freezing waters, rocks warming models
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Your PHONE is slowly KILLING YOU
Doctors find new Digitillnesses - 'text neck' and 'telepressure'
Reuse the Force, Luke: SpaceX's Elon Musk reveals X-WING designs
And a floating carrier for recyclable rockets
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Go beyond APM with real-time IT operations analytics
How IT operations teams can harness the wealth of wire data already flowing through their environment for real-time operational intelligence.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.