FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment

The aim of the FSI-PRI Scholarship is to recognize the best Quebec-based research on responsible investment. Launched in the fall of 2014, the annual scholarship worth several thousands of dollars ($5,000 in 2015 and 2016, but $6,000 in 2017) is awarded to the student who submits the best graduate-level research paper (masters or doctorate).

If you have any questions about the scholarship, please contact recherche-research@ifd-fsi.org.

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Winner of the 2017 edition of the FSI-PRI Scholarship

The winner of the 2017 FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment is Maxime Brochu from the University of Sherbrooke. He was awarded a $6,000 scholarship for his research paper on evaluating the impact of reputation (defined with ESG factors) on share price performance and on company risk for US listed companies (Vertueux vs. opportuniste, Analyse de l’effet réputation sur la performance des entreprises américaines version abbrégée).

The results confirm a correlation with reputation based on the performance of US listed companies between 2004 and 2014, where financial asset evaluation models that incorporated reputational risk factors showed superior performance.

From left to right: Milla Craig, Marie-Claude Provost, Philippe Bélanger, Maxime Brochu, Daniel Simard, Solène Hanquier, Frank Coggins (Supervisor, University of Sherbrooke), Ioana Circo (Jury Member, Université de Montréal)

Award Ceremony

The scholarship award ceremony took place on October 24, 2017 at Montreal’s Centre for Sustainable Development during Responsible Investment Week.

The Co-leader of the Scholarship Steering Committee, Solène Hanquier, FSI Board Member and Sustainable Development Advisor at Groupe Desjardins opened the ceremony, welcoming the attendees and thanking the Scholarship sponsors.

Milla Craig, President and Co-Founder of FSI, and President and Co-Founder of Millani, set the table by presenting the latest statistics and trends in responsible investment. Daniel Simard, President of PRI Quebec Network and CEO of Bâtirente, highlighted the important contribution of university research to shared knowledge among professionals, followed by comments from Marie-Claude Provost of the Caisse de Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, an important sponsor of the Scholarship, who also thanked students for submitting their candidate research.

The president of the jury, Jacques Lussier, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer, Ipsol Capital, then presented the scholarship prize to Maxime who outlined his research methods and key results.

The award was further highlighted at the PRI Quebec Network’s Colloque sur l’investissement responsable on October 26, 2017, where Jacques Lussier interviewed Maxime about his research.

Previous Winners

2nd edition: Salma Ktat, as part of a collaboration between the University of the Antilles and Guyana and the Chair of Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development at UQAM’s École des sciences de la gestion (ESG).  She was awarded the scholarship for her research paper entitled CSR Within Morally Objectionable Businesses: Can What’s Done be Undone.

Samuel Chrétien, holder of a Master of Finance from Université de Sherbrooke, was also awarded  an honourable mention for his research paper on the environmental performance of companies and the likelihood of them experiencing harmful environmental events (La performance environnementale des entreprises et leur probabilité d’expérimenter des événements environnementaux néfastes).

1st edition: Édith Breault, holder of a Master of Finance from Université de Sherbrooke. She was awarded the scholarship for her research paper on the societal performance of companies and their probability of facing media events damaging to their reputation (La performance sociétale des entreprises et leur probabilité de faire face à des événements médiatiques entachant leur réputation).


Eligibility conditions

  • The primary author, or one of the members of the collective, must be enrolled at a Quebec university or have proof of graduation
  • The research paper must be at the master’s or doctorate level
  • The research paper must have been completed after May 15, 2016
  • The research paper must be written in French or English

Students wishing to apply for the FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment must complete the application form, provide the additional documentation and submit their research paper by the respective deadline indicated below.

If you have any questions, contact us at recherche-research@ifd-fsi.org.

Submitting an application
Click here to download the application form for the FSI-PRI Competition for Best Research on Responsible Investment.

To complete your application, you must also submit the following additional documents:

  • Proof of enrolment at a Quebec university
  • Short biography author(s) of the research paper author
  • The research paper
  • Short summary of the research paper (maximum 300 words)

Please send your application form and the required additional documents by email to recherche-research@ifd-fsi.org.

You will receive confirmation that your application has been received and is complete and an ID number that you must use in all communications with the FSI.

The deadline for submitting an application is June 30, 2017.

The recipient is announced at an award ceremony held in the fall.

About the Scholarship


The FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment targets graduate-level university research papers (masters or doctorate). The selection of the best research paper on responsible investment is conducted by a jury of finance professionals and university research experts. The jury uses four categories of selection criteria:

  • research quality,
  • pertinence of the subject matter to finance practitioners,
  • relevance of issues addressed, and
  • impact, especially in terms of possible solutions to an ESG challenge.

Award and recognition

The recipient of the FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment receives a scholarship worth several thousands of dollars ($5,000 in 2015 and 2016, but $6,000 in 2017).

In addition, the FSI will help promote the visibility and recognition of the winning research paper by holding an award ceremony presenting the research.

Steering committee

The FSI-PRI Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment is governed by a steering committee composed of members of the FSI and the PRI Quebec Network. Click here to find out more about the committee.

Scholarship Flyer2017ENDownload a printable brochure about the 2017 edition of the FSI-PRI Scholarship.


The jury is composed equally of finance professionals and university research experts. The jury members for the 2016 edition of the competition are presented below.

Jacques Lussier

Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer, IPSOL Capital

Mr. Lussier founded IPSOL Capital in June 2013. Previously, he spent 18 years at Desjardins Global Asset Management where he was Chief Investment Strategist. He is a board member of the Régie des Rentes du Québec as well as a member of its investment and audit committees. He is the author of the book Successful Investing Is a Process published in December 2012. Mr. Lussier holds a Master of Finance from HEC Montreal and a Ph.D. in International Business from the University of South Carolina, as well as the CFA designation. Mr. Lussier is  currently President of CFA Montreal (2013-2015).

Jean-Philippe Desmartin

Head of ESG research, Oddo Securities

Mr. Desmartin started his career in Crédit du Nord’s financial engineering department in 1993 and then held various positions at the AReSE (France) and Innovest (Canada) social and environmental rating agencies before founding his own consulting firm. He regularly lectures at university/business schools. He is a member of various ESG international working groups and committees (EFFAS, ICGN, IIRC, WICI) and Chairman of the research commission of the French SIF. He is the co-author of two books on responsible investment published in 2005 and 2014. His practice was the subject of a business case at the Harvard Business School in 2011 entitled Oddo Securities: ESG Integration. Mr. Desmartin graduated in Economics and Finance from IEP Paris and holds a degree from Paris II in Business Law (French Institute of Business Law) and Management.

Renée Michaud

Executive Director, International Reference Centre for the Life Cycle of Products, Processes and Services (CIRAIG)

Engineer by training, Renée Michaud holds a master degree in Chemical Engineering from Polytechnique Montreal. She has worked at the CIRAIG since its launch in 2001, where she contributed as a Life Cycle Analyst, Technical Coordinator and Industrial Affairs Director, before becoming the Executive Director in November 2014. As Executive Director, Ms. Michaud’s chief mandate is to increase the impact and visibility of the CIRAIG’s work on the national and international scene.  Ms. Michaud also manages the organisation’s operations and ensures the successful fulfillment of mandates. She is actively involved in CIRAIG’s financing and strives to maximize the impacts of investments made by leveraging the development of research in the fields of sustainable development and life cycle thinking in Quebec.

Bouchra M’Zali

Professor at the Department of Strategy, Social and Environmental Responsibility, UQÀM

Ms. M’Zali is also a researcher at the Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development Research Chair at ESG-UQAM and Director of Research at AICRI. With her students, she has published several book chapters and articles in academic journals and participated in a variety of international scientific conferences where her work received awards (Canadian Price: ASAC: 2005, 2006, 2011; SAB Trophy of sustainable finance: 2013). Ms. M’Zali has participated in many scientific review committees (CRSH, Canada; AERES, France; FIR-PRI; various academic journals). She has received a number of awards in recognition of her contribution to education and research in social corporate responsibility (Finance and Sustainability Initiative: 2012; Skema Prize: 2013). Ms. M’Zali holds a Ph.D. in Finance from the University of Laval as well as the CFA designation.

Stéphane Larsen

Portfolio Manager, Global Real Estate Securities, Presima

At Presima, Mr. Larson is responsible for analysis, financial modelling as well as being co-responsible for all investment decisions made within the North American region and for portfolio construction. Mr. Larsen has worked in the financial industry since 2000, namely at Socrate Wealth Management, where he covered various sectors including chemical, utility and pharmaceutical companies on a global basis. Mr. Larsen holds a Bachelor of Business Administration (Finance) from HEC Montreal and a Master of Finance from the University of Sherbrooke, as well as the CFA designation.

Ioana Circo

Investment Advisor for the Université de Montréal pension plan and endowment fund

Ms. Circo has been with the University of Montreal since 2013. Previously, she worked for more than four years at the Commission administrative des régimes de retraite et d’assurances, where she fulfilled an advisory role for the investment committees of public and parapublic defined benefit pension plans. Ms. Circo began her career at Babes-Bolyai University, in Romania, as an undergraduate teaching assistant. From 2003 to 2006, she held positions in compliance, treasury and foreign exchange transactions settlement at the Raiffeisen Bank. Ms. Circo holds a Bachelor of Finance from Babes-Bolyai University, in Romania, a Master in Management from Université d’Auvergne Clermont-Ferrand I, in France and an MBA in Finance from Laval University. She also holds the CFA designation.

Patrick Savaria

Associate Vice President, Research at the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec

Mr. Savaria leads a research group whose mandates include providing applied research solutions for portfolio design and strategic asset allocation, forecasting long-term risk and return different asset classes, and portfolio benchmarking. Before joining the Caisse in 2004, he was a finance professor at Université Laval for a number of years. Mr. Savaria holds a Ph.D. in Finance from the University of British Columbia and holds the CFA and ASA designations.

Paul Lanoie

Professor of Economics, HEC Montreal

Since 1992, Mr. Lanoie teaches in the area of sustainable development and environmental economics. He has occupied various administrative positions at HEC Montreal: Editor of L’Actualité économique, Director of the economics department, Director of the Bachelor in Business Administration program, Director of sustainable development and Director of academic affairs. He has also coauthored more than 50 academic articles published in leading journals like Academy of Management Perspectives,Journal of Environmental Economics and Management and Ecological Economics.  His research focuses on the various impacts of environmental policies on firms, and on the different ways firms can reconcile their environmental and financial performances. Mr. Lanoie holds a Master in Management from HEC Montreal and a Ph.D. in Economics from Queen’s University.

Collaborators and sponsors

The FSI gratefully acknowledges the support and contribution of its collaborators and sponsors for the FSI-PRI Competition and Scholarship for Best Research on Responsible Investment.