Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

'Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

  • Associate Professor of Finance
  • Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Profile & Expertise

Dr. Andreas G. F. Hoepner is an Associate Professor of Finance at the ICMA Centre of Henley Business School. He is currently also heading the ‘Practical Tools’ research group of the Mistra Financial Systems (MFS) research consortium (5 groups, total funding: SEK 58 million ~ about US$ 7 million). Dr. Hoepner serves as the inaugural chair of the Financial Data Science Association and sits on independent assessment committees for the Investment & Pensions Europe (IPE) Awards (Categories: Climate Change Risk, ESG, Smart Beta), the Investment Innovation Benchmark (IIB), and the RI Awards. He sits on advisory boards for Bank J. Safra Sarasin, the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) and French Social Investment Forum (FIR).

Andreas received his PhD from St Andrews in June 2010, where he was on faculty from 02/2009 to 09/2013 and built up the Centre for Responsible Banking and Finance as its Deputy Director since 11/2011. He is founding co-director of a social enterprise (Sociovestix Labs, a spin-off from the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence [DFKI]) and founding president of a charitable organisation (ReFine Research) that gives social reporting awards to pension funds. Prior to taking up his MISTRA role in March 2016, Andreas served over six years as lead academic advisor United Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment and also consulted for organisations including the European Commission, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

Dr. Hoepner’s financial data science research has made him sole inventor of the US patent investment performance measurement (No. US8751357 B1).

 

Key publications, books, research & papers

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Article

On the price of morals in markets: an empirical study of the Swedish AP-Funds and the Norwegian Government Pension Fund

Hoepner, A. G. F. and Schopohl, L. (2016) On the price of morals in markets: an empirical study of the Swedish AP-Funds and the Norwegian Government Pension Fund. Journal of Business Ethics. ISSN 1573-0697 doi: 10.1007/s10551-016-3261-0

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This study empirically analyses the exclusion of companies from investors’ investment universe due to a company’s business model (sector-based exclusion) or due to a company’s violations of international norms (normbased exclusion). We conduct a time-series analysis of the performance implications of the exclusion decisions of two leading Nordic investors, Norway’s Government Pension Fund-Global (GPFG) and Sweden’s AP-funds. We find that their portfolios of excluded companies do not generate an abnormal return relative to the funds’ benchmark index. While the exclusion portfolios show higher risk than the respective benchmark, this difference is only statistically significant for the case of GPFG. These findings suggest that the exclusion of the companies generally does not harm funds’ performance. We interpret these findings as indicative that with exclusionary screening, as practiced by the sample funds, asset owners can meet the ethical objectives of their beneficiaries without compromising financial returns.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Ms Lisa Schopohl

Ms Lisa Schopohl

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Article

Does stakeholder pressure influence corporate GHG emissions reporting? Empirical evidence from Europe

Liesen, A., Hoepner, A. G. , Patten, D. M. and Figge, F. (2015) Does stakeholder pressure influence corporate GHG emissions reporting? Empirical evidence from Europe. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 28 (7). pp. 1047-1074. ISSN 0951-3574 doi: 10.1108/AAAJ-12-2013-1547

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to seek to shed light on the practice of incomplete corporate disclosure of quantitative Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and investigates whether external stakeholder pressure influences the existence, and separately, the completeness of voluntary GHG emissions disclosures by 431 European companies. Design/methodology/approach – A classification of reporting completeness is developed with respect to the scope, type and reporting boundary of GHG emissions based on the guidelines of the GHG Protocol, Global Reporting Initiative and the Carbon Disclosure Project. Logistic regression analysis is applied to examine whether proxies for exposure to climate change concerns from different stakeholder groups influence the existence and/or completeness of quantitative GHG emissions disclosure. Findings – From 2005 to 2009, on average only 15 percent of companies that disclose GHG emissions report them in a manner that the authors consider complete. Results of regression analyses suggest that external stakeholder pressure is a determinant of the existence but not the completeness of emissions disclosure. Findings are consistent with stakeholder theory arguments that companies respond to external stakeholder pressure to report GHG emissions, but also with legitimacy theory claims that firms can use carbon disclosure, in this case the incomplete reporting of emissions, as a symbolic act to address legitimacy exposures. Practical implications – Bringing corporate GHG emissions disclosure in line with recommended guidelines will require either more direct stakeholder pressure or, perhaps, a mandated disclosure regime. In the meantime, users of the data will need to carefully consider the relevance of the reported data and develop the necessary competencies to detect and control for its incompleteness. A more troubling concern is that stakeholders may instead grow to accept less than complete disclosure. Originality/value – The paper represents the first large-scale empirical study into the completeness of companies’ disclosure of quantitative GHG emissions and is the first to analyze these disclosures in the context of stakeholder pressure and its relation to legitimation.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Article

Sources of stakeholder salience in the responsible investment movement: why do investors sign the Principles for Responsible Investment?

Majoch, A. A. A., Hoepner, A. G. F. and Hebb, T. (2016) Sources of stakeholder salience in the responsible investment movement: why do investors sign the Principles for Responsible Investment? Journal of Business Ethics. ISSN 1573-0697 doi: 10.1007/s10551-016-3057-2

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Since its inception in 2006, the United Nations-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) have grown to over 1300 signatories representing over $45 trillion. This growth is not slowing down. In this paper, we argue that there is a set of attributes which make the PRI salient as a stakeholder and its claim to sign the six PRI important to institutional investors. We use Mitchell et al.’s (Acad Manag Rev 22:853–886, 1997) theoretical framework of stakeholder salience, as extended by Gifford (J Bus Eth 92:79–97, 2010). We use as evidence confidential data from the annual survey of signatories carried out by the PRI in a 5-year period between 2007 and 2011. The findings highlight pragmatic and organizational legitimacy, normative and utilitarian power, and management values as the attributes that contribute most to the salience of the PRI as a stakeholder.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

Liquidity and market efficiency in the world’s largest carbon market

Ibikunle, G., Gregoriou, A., Hoepner, A. and Rhodes, M. (2015) Liquidity and market efficiency in the world’s largest carbon market. The British Accounting Review. ISSN 0890-8389 doi: 10.1016/j.bar.2015.11.001 (In Press)

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We investigate liquidity and market efficiency on the world’s largest carbon exchange, IntercontinentalExchange Inc.’s European Climate Exchange (ECX), by using intraday short-horizon return predictability as an inverse indicator of market efficiency. We find a strong relationship between liquidity and market efficiency such that when spreads narrow, return predictability diminishes. This is more pronounced for the highest trading carbon futures and during periods of low liquidity. Since the start of trading in Phase II of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) prices have continuously moved nearer to unity with efficient, random walk benchmarks, and this improves from year to year. Overall, our findings suggest that trading quality in the EU-ETS has improved markedly and matures over the 2008–2011 compliance years.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

The effects of corporate and country sustainability characteristics on the cost of debt: an international investigation

Hoepner, A. , Oikonomou, I. , Scholtens, L. J. R. and Schröder, M. (2016) The effects of corporate and country sustainability characteristics on the cost of debt: an international investigation. Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, 43 (1-2). pp. 158-190. ISSN 1468-5957 doi: 10.1111/jbfa.12183

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We investigate the relationship between corporate and country sustainability on the cost of bank loans. We look into 470 loan agreements signed between 2005 and 2012 with borrowers based in 28 different countries across the world and operating in all major industries. Our principal findings reveal that country sustainability, relating to both social and environmental frameworks, has a statistically and economically impactful effect on direct financing of economic activity. An increase of one unit in a country’s sustainability score is associated with an average decrease in the cost of debt by 64 basis points. Our international analysis shows that the environmental dimension of a country’s institutional framework is approximately twice as impactful as the social dimension, when it comes to determining the cost of corporate loans. On the other hand, we find no conclusive evidence that firm-level sustainability influences the interest rates charged to borrowing firms by banks. Our main findings survive a battery of robustness tests and additional analyses concerning subsamples, alternative sustainability metrics and the effects of financial crisis.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Dr Ioannis Oikonomou

Dr Ioannis Oikonomou

Programme Area Director of Undergraduate degrees in Finance, Director MSc in Behavioural Finance

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Book or Report Section

Operationalizing socially responsible investment: a non-financial fiduciary duty problem

Barkemeyer, R., Figge, F., Hahn, T., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Liesen, G. and Neher, A. (2014) Operationalizing socially responsible investment: a non-financial fiduciary duty problem. In: Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Johnson, K. L., Sandberg, J. and Waitzer, E. J. (eds.) Cambridge Handbook of Institutional Investment and Fiduciary Duty. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. ISBN 9781107035874

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

Fiduciary duty and sin stocks: is vice really nice?

Hoepner, A. G. F. and Zeume, S. (2014) Fiduciary duty and sin stocks: is vice really nice? In: Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Johnson, K. L., Sandberg, J. and Waitzer, E. J. (eds.) Cambridge Handbook of Institutional Investment and Fiduciary Duty. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 181-207. ISBN 9781107035874

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Book or Report Section

Introduction

Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Johnson, K. L., Sandberg, J. and Waitzer, E. J. (2014) Introduction. In: Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Johnson, K. L., Sandberg, J. and Waitzer, E. J. (eds.) Cambridge Handbook of Institutional Investment and Fiduciary Duty. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 1-8. ISBN 9781107035874

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

Beyond outreach: corporate social responsibility and the financial performance of microfinance institutions

Hoepner, A. G. F. , Huang, G. and Lui, H. (2016) Beyond outreach: corporate social responsibility and the financial performance of microfinance institutions. In: Hebb, T., Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Neher, A. L. and Wood, D. (eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Responsible Investment. Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 677-688. ISBN 9780415624510

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Book

The Routledge Handbook of Responsible Investment

Hebb, T., Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Neher, A. L. and Wood, D., eds. (2016) The Routledge Handbook of Responsible Investment. Routledge, Abingdon. ISBN 9780415624510

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Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

Introduction

Hebb, T., Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Neher, A. L. and Wood, D. (2016) Introduction. In: Hebb, T., Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Neher, A. L. and Wood, D. (eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Responsible Investment. Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 3-15. ISBN 9780415624510

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Book or Report Section

Is responsible investment under proportionally researched?

Hoepner, A. G. F. , McMillan, D. G. and Fraser, M. (2016) Is responsible investment under proportionally researched? In: Hebb, T., Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Neher, A. L. and Wood, D. (eds.) The Routledge Handbook of responsible investment. Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 34-52. ISBN 9780415624510

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Article

Is the journal 'Ecological Economics' really in itself a poor and misleading guide to what ecological economics is about? A reply to "Influencing the perception of what and who is important in ecological economics"

Hoepner, A. G. F. , Kant, B., Scholtens, B. and Yu, P.-S. (2013) Is the journal 'Ecological Economics' really in itself a poor and misleading guide to what ecological economics is about? A reply to "Influencing the perception of what and who is important in ecological economics". Ecological Economics, 89. pp. 174-176. ISSN 0921-8009 doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2013.03.001

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

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Article

Environmental and ecological economics in the 21st century: an age adjusted citation analysis of the most influential articles, journals, authors and institutions

Hoepner, A. G. F. , Kant, B., Scholtens, B. and Yu, P.-S. (2012) Environmental and ecological economics in the 21st century: an age adjusted citation analysis of the most influential articles, journals, authors and institutions. Ecological Economics, 77. pp. 193-206. ISSN 0921-8009 doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2012.03.002

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We investigate the influence of articles, authors, journals and institutions in the field of environmental and ecological economics. We depart from studies that investigated the literature until 2001 and include a time period that has witnessed an enormous increase of importance in the field. We adjust for the age effect given the huge impact of the year of an article’s publication on its influence and we show that this adjustment does make a substantial difference — especially for disaggregated units of analysis with diverse age characteristics such as articles or authors. We analyse 6597 studies on environmental and ecological economics published between 2000 and 2009. We provide rankings of the influential articles, authors, journals and institutions and find that Ecological Economics, Energy Economics and the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management have the most influential articles, they publish very influential authors and their articles are cited most. The University of Maryland, Resources for the Future, the University of East Anglia and the World Bank appear to be the most influential institutions in the field of environmental and ecological economics.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

A review of Islamic funds’ financial performance and investment style in muslim and non-muslim countries

Adamsson, H. , Hoepner, A. , Rammal, H.G. and Rezec, M. (2011) A review of Islamic funds’ financial performance and investment style in muslim and non-muslim countries. In: Hadj Ali, S. and Escurat, A. (eds.) Finance Islamique. Regard(s) sure une finance alternative. Mazars, Algiers.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

Active ownership and ESG performance

Majoch, A. A. A. , Gifford, E. J. M. and Hoepner, A. G. F. (2012) Active ownership and ESG performance. In: Jones, S. and Ratnatunga, J. (eds.) Contemporary issues in sustainability accounting, assurance and reporting. Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 115-138. ISBN 9781780520209

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book or Report Section

Social, environmental, ethical and trust (SEET) issues in banking: an overview

Hoepner, A. G. F. and Wilson, J. O.S. (2012) Social, environmental, ethical and trust (SEET) issues in banking: an overview. In: Barth, J. R., Lin, C. and Wihlborg, C. (eds.) Research Handbook on International Banking and Governance. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, pp. 427-457. ISBN 9781849802932

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Social, environmental and trust issues in business and finance

Biehl, C. F. , Hoepner, A. G. F. and Liu, J. (2012) Social, environmental and trust issues in business and finance. In: Baker, H. K. and Nofsinger, J. R. (eds.) Socially Responsible Finance and Investing. Wiley, Hoboken, pp. 111-142. ISBN 9781118100097

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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A review of Islamic mutual funds’ financial performance and investment style in Muslim and non-Muslim countries

Adamsson, H. , Hoepner, A. , Rammal, H. and Rezec, M. (2011) A review of Islamic mutual funds’ financial performance and investment style in Muslim and non-Muslim countries. In: Finance Islamique: regard(s) sur une finance alternative. Mazars Algeria, pp. 129-132.

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Islamic finance has grown beyond its reputation of providing small-scale banking options and now provides investment and financing options for complex large-scale commercial transactions. Islamic investments are one area that has attracted the attention of investors due to its performance, especially during the economic downturn. The Shari’ah compliance nature of Islamic funds provides an opportunity for those Muslim investors to be part of the global investment sector who have previously been reluctant to invest in conventional mutual funds. The fact that the funds’ managers are prohibited from investing in activities such as weapons production, alcohol production and interest-bearing finance operations, makes Islamic mutual funds also attractive for those Non-Muslim investors who wish to invest ethically. Today there are hundreds of Islamic equity indices offered by Dow Jones, FTSE, MSCI and S&P. Despite the growing importance of Islamic funds, there have been limited studies exploring the performance of Islamic funds worldwide. Due to very limited data sets and not too rigorous analytical methods, these existent studies have neither investigated Islamic funds’ financial performance in noticeable detail nor analysed the investment style of more than six funds. For instance, relevant questions such as the financial performance of Islamic mutual funds’ beyond their investment styles or a difference in performance between funds from Muslim and non-Muslim countries have nearly not been investigated at all. Very recently, a study by Hoepner, Rammal and Rezec (2011) analysed the financial performance and investment style of 262 Islamic equity funds from 20 countries in five regions (Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, Gulf Cooperative Council-GCC, and North America). As comparison, previous studies did not even analyse 60 funds. Hoepner et al.’s study sampled a period of two decades and was therefore able to test the performance of the funds during economic booms as well as economic downturns. The findings of the study provide new insights into the performance of Islamic mutual funds in Muslim and Western markets and during financial crisis.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

PLEASE CITE THIS: an exploratory paper on citations, impacts and the social accounting literature

Gray, R. and Hoepner, A. G. F. (2011) PLEASE CITE THIS: an exploratory paper on citations, impacts and the social accounting literature. Social and Environmental Accountability Journal, 31 (1). pp. 25-47. ISSN 0969-160X doi: 10.1080/0969160X.2011.556392

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This paper seeks to use the increasingly influential citation and impact data to explore the contours of the social and environmental accounting (SEA) literature. Our ambitions are fourfold. First, we offer a more nuanced understanding of the journals in which we tend to publish SEA research. Second, we tease out what might plausibly be thought to be one indication of the ‘most influential’ SEA papers. Third, we offer a substantive cautionary note about the dangers of the careless use of citations as singular measures of ‘quality’ or ‘importance’, etc. Finally, we place the growing SEA literature in a wider context which both flatters and challenges the community that SEAJ seeks to serve.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Book

Handbook of institutional investment and fiduciary duty

Hawley, J. P., Hoepner, A. G. F. , Johnson, K. L., Sandberg, J. and Waitzer, E. J., eds. (2014) Handbook of institutional investment and fiduciary duty. Cambridge University Press, pp507. ISBN 9781107035874

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Foreword by Al Gore, former Vice President of the United States Endorsements by Keith Ambachsheer, James Gifford, John Kay, Bob Monks, Knut Rostad and Anne Stausboll

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

Explicit and implicit subject bias in the ABS journal quality guide

Hoepner, A. and Unerman, J. (2012) Explicit and implicit subject bias in the ABS journal quality guide. Accounting Education, 21 (1). pp. 5-13. ISSN 0963-9284 doi: 10.1080/09639284.2011.651291

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This paper addresses issues raised in two recent papers published in this journal about the UK Association of Business Schools’ Journal Quality Guide (ABS Guide). While much of the debate about journal rankings in general, and the ABS Guide in particular, has focused on the construction, power and (mis)use of these rankings, this paper differs in that it explains and provides evidence about explicit and implicit biases in the ABS Guide. In so doing, it poses potentially difficult questions that the editors of the ABS Guide need to address and urgently rectify if the ABS Guide seeks to build and retain legitimacy. In particular, the evidence in this paper shows explicit bias in the ABS Guide against several subject areas, including accounting and finance. It also shows implicit bias against accounting and finance when comparing journal rankings in sub-areas shared between accounting and finance and the broader business management subject areas.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

Islamic mutual funds' financial performance and international investment style: evidence from 20 countries

Hoepner, A. , Rammal, H. and Rezec, M. (2011) Islamic mutual funds' financial performance and international investment style: evidence from 20 countries. European Journal of Finance, 17 (9/10). pp. 829-850. ISSN 1466-4364 doi: 10.1080/1351847X.2010.538521

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We pursue the first large-scale investigation of a strongly growing mutual fund type: Islamic funds. Based on an unexplored, survivorship bias-adjusted data set, we analyse the financial performance and investment style of 265 Islamic equity funds from 20 countries. As Islamic funds often have diverse investment regions, we develop a (conditional) three-level Carhart model to simultaneously control for exposure to different national, regional and global equity markets and investment styles. Consistent with recent evidence for conventional funds, we find Islamic funds to display superior learning in more developed Islamic financial markets. While Islamic funds from these markets are competitive to international equity benchmarks, funds from especially Western nations with less Islamic assets tend to significantly underperform. Islamic funds’ investment style is somewhat tilted towards growth stocks. Funds from predominantly Muslim economies also show a clear small cap preference. These results are consistent over time and robust to time varying market exposures and capital market restrictions.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

Environmental and ecological economics in the 21st century: an age adjusted citation analysis of the influential articles, journals, authors and institutions

Hoepner, A. G. F. , Kant, B., Scholtens, B. and Yu, P.-S. (2012) Environmental and ecological economics in the 21st century: an age adjusted citation analysis of the influential articles, journals, authors and institutions. Ecological Economics, 77. pp. 193-206. ISSN 0921-8009 doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2012.03.002

|

We investigate the influence of articles, authors, journals and institutions in the field of environmental and ecological economics. We depart from studies that investigated the literature until 2001 and include a time period that has witnessed an enormous increase of importance in the field. We adjust for the age effect given the huge impact of the year of an article’s publication on its influence and we show that this adjustment does make a substantial difference — especially for disaggregated units of analysis with diverse age characteristics such as articles or authors. We analyse 6597 studies on environmental and ecological economics published between 2000 and 2009. We provide rankings of the influential articles, authors, journals and institutions and find that Ecological Economics, Energy Economics and the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management have the most influential articles, they publish very influential authors and their articles are cited most. The University of Maryland, Resources for the Future, the University of East Anglia and the World Bank appear to be the most influential institutions in the field of environmental and ecological economics.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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Article

The level of compliance with the International Code of marketing of breast-milk substitutes: does it matter to stock markets?

Hoepner, A. G. F. , de Aguiar, T. R. S. and Majithia, R. (2014) The level of compliance with the International Code of marketing of breast-milk substitutes: does it matter to stock markets? Journal of Business Ethics, 119 (3). pp. 329-348. ISSN 1573-0697 doi: 10.1007/s10551-013-1625-2

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The present paper explores, theoretically, and empirically, whether compliance with the International Code of marketing of breast-milk substitutes impacts on financial performance measured by stock markets. The empirical analysis, which considers a 20-year period, shows that stock markets are indifferent to the level of compliance by manufacturers with the International Code. Two important issues emerge from this result. Based on our finding that financial performance as measured by stock markets cannot explain the level of compliance, the first issue refers to what alternative types of mechanisms drive manufacturers who comply the least with voluntary codes such as the International Code. Conversely, from our finding that stock markets do not reward the most compliant, the second issue raised is an inherent weakness of stock markets to fully incorporate social and environmental values.

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Dr Andreas G. F. Hoepner

Director of Enterprise, ICMA Centre

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