ESG Data Guide 2023

ISS ESG - Sector-Based Screening

Data category

  • Environmental data
  • Social data
  • Governance data
  • Indices/Exchange data
  • Research data

The data offers solutions for:

  • Investment decisions and portfolio insight
  • Nature-based information: Biodiversity
  • Reporting: CSRD
  • Reporting: Impact
  • Social impact analysis and insight

Who are the data users?

  • Corporates
  • Financial institutions
  • Government
  • Investors
  • Trustees
  • Index providers; Institutional investors; Asset managers; Asset owners; Fund managers; Banks; Universities; Research firms

Brief description of the data offering

ISS ESG’s Sector-Based Screening provides an assessment of companies with business involvement in specific sectors, products or services.

Sector-Based Screening supports investor action on ethical or faith-based criteria by assessing a company’s current involvement in the following:

  • Abortion/Abortifacients
  • Adult Entertainment/ Pornography
  • Alcohol
  • Animal Testing
  • Animal Welfare (incl. Factory Farming)
  • Cannabis
  • Civilian Firearms
  • Contraceptives
  • Euthanasia
  • For-profit Correctional Facilities
  • Gambling
  • GMOs
  • Hazardous Substances
  • Islamic Finance
  • Military Equipment & Services
  • Palm Oil
  • Pork
  • Predatory Lending
  • Stem Cell Research
  • Tobacco
  • Violent Video Games

Additional information is available for companies with indications of current involvement, including profile notes on the company’s involvement in a certain product or service, and reported data or estimate of share of revenues derived from certain product or service. Coverage for most sector-based screens includes approximately 26,000 issuers as of March 2022. Coverage varies by issue.

Where and how do you source your data?

ISS ESG employs an issue-based approach to screening which focuses on the actions of companies across the globe. This approach allows ISS ESG to flag potential scrutinized companies that would not otherwise fall into a defined index and allows for fuller coverage. Companies within risk sectors are actively screened to determine the involvement in the relevant controversial activity.

Screening data and estimates are based on the most recent annual report and/or financial filings, published company information, expert sources and non-governmental organisations reports. ISS ESG also gathers relevant industry sector statistics. Further, ISS ESG conducts a fact-finding dialogue with the company when further clarification is needed.

Information is updated annually with updates scheduled according to financial data release.  Information about corporate events is tracked via news sources and updated as financial releases become available. Clients may access the team of ISS ESG analysts for questions related to research results or broader ESG issues. 

What is the cost for your data offering?

Pricing is based on the method by which data is delivered. ISS ESG can provide data via its proprietary platform, DataDesk, or via data feed. Pricing for this solution is available upon request.

What are the key attributes that differentiates the data you offer?

  • High quality data. ISS ESG’s comprehensive Sector-Based Screening methodology, supported by strict internal quality management systems, is based on recognized value systems that are continuously adapted to the latest developments and insights in the field of sustainability. Additionally, ISS ESG’s data is underpinned by feedback from the evaluated companies, which are given the opportunity to comment on the preliminary results and to provide additional information.
  • Insights from industry specialists. ISS ESG employs a dedicated team of specialists with specialized backgrounds in relevant industries such as military and defence, finance and healthcare.
  • International expertise and local support. Exceptional client service is a hallmark of the ISS ESG business model with local research, consultants and operational support represented in a dedicated service team. The client support team builds the bridge for clients to the highly experienced team of analysts to help ensure that clients are supported by knowledgeable, skilled professionals to support business objectives.
  • An integrated environmental, social and governance solution. The service combination of the various governance and responsible investment related services offered by ISS allows investors to address ESG challenges with one common approach and rely on global account management and research teams able to offer coherent and unified answers and solutions to their ESG needs. ISS ESG is a true one-stop shop, able to support investors across all ESG related topics.
  • Workflow benefits from technological innovation. Through its proprietary online platform, DataDesk, clients have access to more than 10,000 data points across ESG/financial themes, allowing investors to view and screen data across companies, to search and view detailed profiles by company, or to monitor portfolios and watchlists.


Sector-Based Screening, offered by @ISSESG, assesses companies’ involvement in a range of products and services: alcohol, animal welfare, #cannabis, for-profit prisons, #gambling, pornography, #tobacco & more: