OxProx is the first ever publicly accessible location to see, examine, and compare proxy voting records by asset owners and asset managers. Voting in corporate elections was originally conducted in-person, but is now more often done by proxy using a mail-in or electronic ballot.
Spun out of a social venture in February 2022 through the Oxford University Innovation, OxProx provides a public database for shareholders, stakeholders, researchers, journalists, and others to see how institutional investors have voted
OxProx was developed by founder Ian Robertson during his doctoral work at the University of Oxford, where his thesis focused on responsible investment and proxy voting by asset owners and asset managers.
What is OxProx?
OxProx is a publicly accessible, global database of proxy voting records. More specifically, it contains the voting records of institutional investors – asset owners and asset managers – from the annual general meetings (AGMs) and other meetings held by publicly traded corporations (also known as issuers).
In February 2022, OxProx was spun out as social venture from the University of Oxford through Oxford University Innovation. OxProx is a member of Social Enterprise UK.
Why a Public Database?
Voting in corporate elections for directors who represent shareholders and to approve auditors and their pay is a longstanding right of shareholders. Originally conducted in person but now most often done by proxy using a mail-in or electronic ballot, voting has taken on additional importance as the environmental, social, and government (ESG) issues are faced by corporations and raised by shareholders and stakeholders. Of particular interest to many is how investors vote on shareholder ESG proposals – OxProx is a free database for shareholders, stakeholders, researchers, journalists, and others to see how institutional investors have voted.
Share ownership is global while investors are usually regulated by national standards. This means reporting of proxy votes – if required at all – is different in different jurisdictions, and while many institutional investors choose to display their voting records on their corporate websites, and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the US requires asset managers to report them annually in their EDGAR database, there is no publicly accessible location to see, examine, and compare voting records … until OxProx!
Access and transparency of investor proxy voting for positive social impact
Where did the idea for OxProx come from?
The idea for OxProx began with a book chapter written by founder Ian Robertson that explored the decline in proxy voting by retail (individual) investors. The chapter was recognized by the UN backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) as ‘Best Student Paper’ in its year of publication.
The idea was developed further during his doctoral work at the University of Oxford, where his thesis focuses on responsible investment and proxy voting by asset owners and asset managers. Ian is a member of Kellogg College and a student in the Department of Continuing Education and in the School of School of Geography and the Environment. He is a past board chair of the Responsible Investment Association (Canada) and a regular speaker and and writer on ESG topics.
Sameer Somal, CFA, CFP®, CAIA
Operations Lead & Data Analytics
Esteban Lluis Aceff
Database Management & Statistics
Pablo A. Ruz Salmones
Database Management & Statistics