AIMA D&I Publications

The Alternatives

Informed by conversations with firms all around the world, AIMA has produced a paper with support from EY containing 45 different actions that hedge fund firms of all sizes can take to improve their D&I practices, from how they find new recruits to how they develop existing talent.

Within the pages of The Alternatives you will find an examination of the challenges faced by the hedge fund industry when it comes to D&I and an explanation of why D&I is so important to our industry. The paper also sets out why people choose to join hedge fund firms in the first place and shares case studies of individuals and firms with unique diversity and inclusion stories to tell.

For more information about The Alternatives, please contact Adam Jacobs-Dean ([email protected]).

AIMA/Albourne DDQ

The advantages of having a diverse and inclusive workforce have been well documented and we know that there is an increasing desire amongst peers in the alternatives industry to improve. An increasing number of investors are including D&I criteria in their evaluations of alternative investment managers. Reasons for doing so range from the awareness that diverse teams lead to better decision-making, to a desire to combat systemic inequity, to a wish to better align investment programs with the values of their institutions.

Recognising the importance of D&I to the alternative investment management industry, AIMA and Albourne Partners Limited have worked together to produce a freely available D&I questionnaire for all alternative investment managers. The questionnaire is based on the D&I section of the ILPA Due Diligence Questionnaire published in September 2018 and has been supplemented by input from Albourne and AIMA as well as institutional investors and fund managers.

This new questionnaire, which is designed to be an optional module within the existing suite of AIMA Due Diligence Questionnaires, aims to promote better D&I practices and become a standardised D&I questionnaire. It builds upon the work begun in November 2019, when AIMA launched The Alternatives, a paper containing 45 practical steps that industry members can take to improve D&I, from how they find new recruits to how best to develop existing talent.

For the purposes of the questionnaire, diversity focuses on classifications of women and minority groups within the workforce; this includes racial/ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+ individuals, veterans and persons with disabilities.* Inclusion incorporates the practices of equal recognition, respect and merit-based evaluation. Efforts to facilitate D&I aim to ensure that underrepresented groups are not only present but are treated with the respect and recognition that they deserve.  

Although the principle of D&I is global, it is recognised that firms will approach this matter in different ways, depending on where in the world they are based. Currently, this questionnaire covers racial/ethnic minorities only in the specific contexts of the US, Canada, UK, and Australia. Respondents in jurisdictions where a specific diversity template is not available are nevertheless encouraged to consider what questions they are able to answer and respond accordingly.  

For more information about the AIMA/Albourne DDQ, please contact Adam Jacobs-Dean ([email protected]).

*Although the broad definition above covers the key aspects of diversity, it is acknowledged that there are many elements of diversity, such as socioeconomic background, educational background, religion, and age. Currently these elements fall outside of the scope of this questionnaire.

How to be an Ally: Stories from the Hedge Fund Industry 

Drawing on the stories of members of the global hedge fund industry, How to be an Ally: Stories from the Hedge Fund Industry provides advice on how to be an ally to colleagues from minority or underrepresented groups. The paper provides examples of how members of the industry can support their colleagues, and breaks allyship down into four pillars: listening, supporting, educating, and persisting. Each pillar is illustrated with stories from the industry, featuring individuals and firms from across the world.

For more information on AIMA’s work on diversity, equity, and inclusion, please contact Aniqah Rao at ([email protected]).