Asset Owner Governance Project

What is it?

As public pensions, endowments, foundations and other asset owners have faced financial stress in recent years, experts from across industry and academia have observed over time that good governance can mitigate these issues and is an important determinant of long-term success. Our research has found that organizations with effective governance are better equipped to manage potential risks, protect against fiduciary liabilities and capture opportunities to improve structures, strategies and metrics.

From a long-term research project that began in 2012, and through the generous support of our sponsors, the Marquette S-Lab has made available to organizations for the first time the Fiduciary Effectiveness Quotient (FEQ) Governance Evaluation system free to asset owner organizations. In addition, the system provides exclusive access to one of the leading board self-evaluation tools, the Governance Self-Assessment Checklist (GSAC). These self-service modules provide organizations real-time feedback and insight on their governance programs. 

Who may participate?

The system is available to any public or corporate pension plan, foundation, endowment, sovereign wealth fund, family office, non-profit or other dedicated fund organization.

What are the benefits?

  • Dedicated client portal with convenient access
  • Easy-to-administer
  • Confidential and secure
  • Immediate results
  • Sophisticated reporting, great for sharing with stakeholders for transparency and best practice benchmarking.
  • Ongoing tracking for trend analysis
  • Usable from a computer or mobile device
  • Contribute to the system’s ongoing discovery of best practices through machine learning.

How does my organization sign up?

To request access, fill out this online form. Each organization must appoint at least one administrator to access the system. Once approved, the administrator will receive an activation email for the organization's dedicated online system portal.

How do I access the portal?

Related research and other resources:

Overview Presentation

Instructional video on using the FGS system: coming soon


Books and publications:

The Trustee Governance Guide: The Five Imperatives of 21st Century Investing 

Governing for Results

PhD thesis:


CFA Enterprising article:

Benefits Magazine

Boston College Center for Retirement Research:

Commonfund research: