REIT industry ESG data continues to improve both in quality and quantity, yet the lack of standardization remains a challenge, according to Bradford Stoesser, senior managing director and global industry analyst at Wellington Management.

In a REIT Report interview, Stoesser said REIT ESG data is “markedly better than even just a few years ago.”

“We are starting to see a proliferation of data providers and while more ESG data is a positive, quality and standardization are important, allowing for effective comparisons,” Stoesser said. He noted that companies largely self-report, meaning that transparency is often lacking.

Data providers, meanwhile, measure ESG differently and often are not clear in terms of the specific subcategories of E, S and G, and how they are measured, Stoesser explained. “The risk is that investors end up with very different impressions of a corporate’s ESG (information) based on the data they source,” he said.

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