Australian asset owner stewardship code

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The Australian Asset Owner Stewardship Code (Code) was created in 2018 to help increase the transparency and accountability of stewardship activities in Australia. The updated Code was published on 22nd March 2024.

The updated Code will be applicable to signatories from 1 July 2024.

Stewardship can be defined as the ‘use of investor rights and influence to protect and enhance overall long-term value for clients and beneficiaries, including the common economic, social and environmental assets on which their interests depend.’[1]

The Code provides stewardship principles and guidance to aid asset owners in fulfilling their fiduciary obligations to their beneficiaries. This allows asset owners to approach stewardship in the spirit of the principles while reflecting their size, resourcing, membership and investment policies.

Code signatories disclose their approach to key stewardship activities: voting, engagement, policy advocacy, collaboration and the selection, appointment and monitoring of external asset managers, and to report the outcomes of those activities.


By voting, investors exercise their right to vote on matters presented at investee company meetings.

Voting can be used to express views on a company’s strategy, leadership, remuneration, mergers and acquisitions and ESG practices and disclosure.


Engagement involves discussion between investors and the board or senior management of an investee company on long-term issues such as a company’s performance, strategy, leadership, and the quality of its reporting.

Engagement can take several forms, including meetings and written communication, and will have a clear objective. For example, investors may be seeking a better understanding of a company’s strategy, seeking to influence company behaviour, or to accompany their voting activity.

Public Policy Advocacy

Investors may encourage policy makers to align regulatory policy with the interests of long-term investors. For example, investors may advocate for public policy settings that enhance investee companies’ approaches to managing their long-term risk. This represents pursuit of change at the systemic level as a means of enhancing financial outcomes.[2]


Stewardship activities may be undertaken collaboratively. Collaboration can increase influence while supporting activity to be conducted in the most efficient manner.  Collaboration must be conducted within the relevant regulatory requirements.

Click the link below to read the code.

Requirements for signatories

While signing up to the Code is voluntary, asset owners who wish to become a signatory must:

  • Publish a Stewardship Statement on their website that (on an ‘if not, why not’ basis):
    • Describes how each of the Code’s seven principles have been applied, or
    • If one or more principles have not been applied, explains why.
  • When the statement has been published, provide ACSI a link to your Stewardship Statement via

Becoming a signatory

Asset owners who wish to become a signatory may find it helpful to undertake the following steps:

  • Familiarise yourself and relevant investment team members, committees, senior management and trustees/boards with the Code.
  • Determine what (if any) changes need to be made to your policies, practices and disclosures to comply with the Code.
  • Draft a Stewardship Statement (to be published on your website) that includes the elements listed above.
  • Once the statement has been prepared and reviewed, advise ACSI and provide us with a link to your Stewardship Statement.

Code Signatories

The table below lists the asset owners who are signatories to the Code. The table includes a link to the signatories’ Stewardship Statement, in addition to their responsible investing page. Signatories’ responsible investing website’ pages typically include a link to signatories’ voting policies and a summary of when and how the signatory has exercised their voting rights. The pages may also include links to recent sustainability, stewardship or responsible investing reports.

Please note that signatories will begin reporting against the updated Code as of 1 July 2024. The statements below may therefore relate to the previous version of the Code.

Asset OwnerStewardship StatementResponsible Investment page
Active SuperActive Super Stewardship StatementResponsible Investment | Active Super
AustralianSuperAustralianSuper Stewardship StatementESG Management & Responsible Investing | AustralianSuper
Aware SuperAware Super Stewardship StatementOur Approach to ESG | Aware Super – Australian Superannuation Fund
CareSuperCareSuper Stewardship StatementOur Responsible Investment Policy | CareSuper
Catholic SuperCatholic Super Stewardship StatementResponsible investing (
Cbus SuperCbus Super Stewardship StatementInvesting Responsibly | Sustainability ESG | Cbus Super
Equip SuperEquip Super Stewardship StatementResponsible investing (
HESTAHESTA Stewardship StatementInvestment excellence with impact – Super with Impact | HESTA
HostplusHostplus Stewardship StatementOur responsible investment approach (
NGS SuperNGS Super Stewardship StatementResponsible Investing for Your Tomorrow | NGS Super
State SuperState Super Stewardship StatementInvestment Policies | State Super (
Telstra SuperTelstraSuper Stewardship StatementSustainable Investment | TelstraSuper
TWU SuperTWUSUPER Stewardship StatementResponsible investment – TWUSUPER
UniSuperUniSuper Stewardship StatementResponsible investment | UniSuper

ACSI can assist asset owners who wish to become a signatory. For further information, contact us at

[1] UN PRI, CFA Institute and Global Sustainable Investment Alliance Definitions for Responsible Investment Approaches November 2023

[2] See, Freshfields (2021), A Legal Framework for Impact, at 13 articulating instrumental investing for sustainability impact, which includes pursuing impact to protect or enhance the performance of a portfolio, including “to support the sustainability of economic, environmental and social systems on which financial value depends.”

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