In Conversation with the ESG Team

Welcome to In Conversation with the ESG Team, the media hub for Linklaters' global ESG practice.

On this page you can access videos, webinars and podcasts in which experts from around the world discuss the key ESG issues of today.

Game pieces

Human rights: What does it mean for businesses?

Exploring business and human rights

In this podcast series we explore a number of key business and human rights themes that businesses need to be aware of.

Visit our series page to listen to the podcasts

Purple forest

ESG Soundbite Series

Exploring ESG

Want to know more about ESG in a quick and digestible way? In this ongoing series of bite-sized podcasts and videocasts our ESG team discuss the hottest topics in ESG. These conversational-style videos will cover a wide range of ESG topics from sustainable finance to business and human rights.

Explore the Soundbite Series

Game pieces

Culture: What does it mean for businesses?

Exploring culture

We have been working with Crafty Counsel to produce a series of six bite-sized videos, each aimed at exploring what culture is and why it matters through sharing what we have seen in legal practice.

Visit the Culture Hub to watch the series


ESG in Italy - Embracing sustainability

ESG has grown as a central topic in the agendas of major organisations, worldwide as in Italy.

The discussions on such themes is indeed “hot”, but what are organisations really doing to this end? A practical response to such themes is not always easy to be found, as a lack of proper guidance makes it hard for companies to direct investments to specific ESG targets.


ESG in the US, EU and UK – towards greater convergence

The pace of acceleration of the ESG agenda on both sides of the Atlantic is unprecedented. In this session Linklaters Partners Jason Manketo, Doug Davison, Brad Caswell and Vanessa Havard-Williams discussed key ESG developments in the US since the inauguration of President Biden in January and how this compares with the ESG policy and regulatory landscape in the EU and UK.

For more information, read our latest publication “Towards greater convergence: The ESG landscape on both sides of the Atlantic”.

ESG Accelerator series - Competition law and sustainability - Is competition law cooperating?

Antitrust has been seen as a deterrent to industry sustainability initiatives because companies fear cartel allegations if they cooperate with competitors, even in pursuit of bona fide goals such as upholding environmental standards. In this webinar we focused on how companies can achieve their sustainability goals and stay within the competition rules as they currently apply, potential reforms, and the lessons we can apply from the Covid-19 crisis to competition law and climate change.

ESG Outlook for the UK and the US in 2021

With the pace of change on all matters environmental, social and governance (ESG) accelerating, 2021 marks the start of a period of major change that is likely to continue over the next decade, throughout which business and financial institutions will be judged on how well they adapt and how well we all walk the talk.

In this webinar we discussed:

  • The key ESG-related global legal trends for 2021
  • What we expect to see from the UK, which is hosting both the G7 Summit and COP26 later this year
  • What key developments we anticipate from the US

ESG Accelerator series – ESG reporting for corporates

The EU has been reviewing the Non-Financial Reporting Directive with a view to making significant changes to what needs to be disclosed, who needs to disclose and how. In the UK, the FCA has issued new rules on climate disclosure for premium listed companies.

This session explained the latest developments, who is affected and how those changes fit in with the new disclosure regime under the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulations and Taxonomy Regulation.

ESG Accelerator series – What the EU sustainable finance package means for corporates

The EU sustainable finance package pushes financial market participants and financial advisers to make new disclosures to clients or stakeholders on how they integrate ESG risks into their investment processes. In this session, we explained the impact of the Taxonomy Regulation, the indirect impact of Disclosure Regulation and the overall aim of the EU Sustainable Finance Strategy to drive more capital into companies and projects that are sustainable.

ESG Accelerator series – Resilience in supply chains

Organisations and their supply chains have been sorely tested in 2020, by Covid-19, challenging geopolitics, a growing focus on ESG and the upcoming challenges of Brexit and severe weather. In the face of all these issues, we considered how to assess the resilience and ESG performance of suppliers and how to strengthen supply chains. We outlined some of the key steps you can take to assess and manage risk and respond to problems.

ESG Accelerator series – The ESG megatrend: what and why now?

Environment, social and governance (“ESG”) is going mainstream. Investors have become increasingly proactive in engaging with corporates on ESG issues and Regulators are introducing extensive legal changes with potentially far-reaching consequences. Access to finance may become more challenging for those not engaging robustly with this agenda. Social norms and stakeholder expectations are changing and corporates' social license to operate is increasingly tied to their profile on managing ESG matters.

The ESG megatrend presents both risks and opportunities for corporates.

In this session, we discussed the drivers behind this new megatrend, why there is a shift and most importantly, what to do when venturing into this brave new world.

Corporate purpose, culture and values in a post-Covid world

2020 has been a turbulent year for many businesses so far. Recent events have highlighted just how important an organisation’s purpose, culture and values can be when making critical decisions in a challenging environment, navigating evolving societal expectations and planning for a sustainable future amid heightened stakeholder and media scrutiny. Purpose, culture and values are now front and centre of the board and management agenda and a core area of focus for many organisations as they look to position themselves in a post-pandemic world.

ESG and 2050 – The road to net zero

ESG remains a key focus for funds, asset managers and other financial institutions and corporates. In this webinar we explore how in practice energy and infrastructure must adapt in order to transition to net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Linklaters was joined by Energy Systems Catapult, an independent energy sector non-profit organisation set up through Innovate UK, who outline an evidenced based, techno-economic pathway for the UK to meet its net zero target. 


ESG in supply chains

Supply chains have never been more in focus, and we are seeing significant changes to them being made – both short-term and long-term, in order to mitigate risk and to take advantage of new opportunities.

Even before the advent of Covid-19, environmental, social and governance issues were large on the agenda of many regulators, clients, consumers, shareholders and investors. Now, as people around the world pull together with a mind on the greater good, focus on this is even sharper. Businesses are commissioning ESG reviews of their supply chains; investors are looking at ways to build sustainability into their investment processes.

ESG Disclosure Regulation Level 2 CP – what do firms need to know

The European Supervisory Authorities have published a consultation paper (“CP”) with proposed Level 2 standards for the ESG Disclosure Regulation. We discussed in this session, how the CP sets out very detailed and potentially onerous disclosure/reporting obligations on asset managers and financial advisers.

The consultation closes on 1 September 2020 and the final Level 2 Rules will be published on 30 December 2020. As firms must comply with the Disclosure Regulation from 10 March 2021, timing is of the essence.

Covid-19: Returning to work: Health & safety implications in England

On 11 May 2020, the UK Prime Minister announced a gradual, three-stage plan to begin easing England out of lockdown over the coming weeks and months. In this podcast, we look at the legal requirements in health & safety legislation to carry out a risk assessment and the new Covid-19 secure guidance, to help companies assess what this means for them as they map out a plan to return to work.

Covid-19: Exiting lockdown: Strategies and next steps

Lawyers from our employment, risk advisory and technology teams discussed:

  • The UK government’s latest thinking around plans to exit lockdown
  • Health and safety considerations, including implementing social distancing measures in the workplace
  • Use of technology, such as health apps, and related data privacy issues; and
  • Stakeholder engagement and risk management.

Sustainable Finance

An update on regulatory developments in the sustainable finance space (including the much anticipated EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy) and a discussion of what the derivatives and structured products world needs to be aware of.

Competition Law and Sustainability - Is Competition Law Cooperating? 

In this webinar Nicole Kar (Head of UK Competition, Linklaters), Simon Holmes (Judge, UK Competition Appeals Tribunal), Matthew Bennett (Vice-President, Charles River Associates) and Emma Cochrane (Practice Development Lawyer, Linklaters) discuss how companies can achieve their ESG goals and stay within the competition rules as they currently apply, potential reforms, and the lessons we can apply from the Covid-19 crisis to competition law and climate change.

ESG, Climate Change and the Competition Agenda

Listen to Nicole Kar (Head of UK Competition, Linklaters) and Vanessa Havard-Williams (Global Head of Environment, Linklaters) share their insights into ESG, climate change and the competition agenda. This podcast focuses on why environmental issues are so important for businesses, the interplay with competition law – especially in the context of competitor cooperation, and, while we await clearer guidance from authorities, how companies can lawfully pursue their collaborative sustainability initiatives in the here and now.

The Business Case for Corporate Respect for Human Rights

Showing respect for human rights has long been an issue for companies. However, human rights initiatives were usually seen as the remit of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) departments. Our clients are now telling us that human rights risks are rising up the corporate agenda and increasingly treated as a compliance issue. In the first edition of our human rights video series Rachel Barrett and Hamish McAvaney discuss what is driving this trend.

Human Rights Compliance Systems

In the second edition of our human rights video series Rachel Barrett and Hamish McAvaney discuss where companies should start when thinking about developing a human rights compliance framework. 

Human Rights and the Supply Chain

In the last of our human rights video series Rachel Barrett and Hamish McAvaney focus on human rights in the supply chain and why it’s an area of importance for companies.

x COP26 and beyond