Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican (CICV), also known just as Council for Inclusive Capitalism, promotes inclusive capitalism, a business and political policy movement based on aligning capitalism with progressive priorities. CICV is an off-shoot of Coalition for Inclusive Capitalism, both of which were founded by Lynn Forester de Rothschild, a member of the Rothschild financial dynasty and a personal friend of the Clinton family. De Rothschild became an advocate for inclusive capitalism after the 2008 financial crisis.
Pope Francis, the head of the Vatican City State through his leadership of the Roman Catholic Church, has a founding advisory role with CICV and meets with its leaders annually.
Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican promotes a policy movement known as “inclusive capitalism,” which emerged after the 2008 financial crisis. The movement advocates for adjusting the motivations, incentives, and legal structures of capitalism to promote wealth redistribution, limit inequality, and protect the environment. Supporters primarily draw from corporate executives who see themselves as stewards for a global economic order aligned with left-of-center interests. Along with Lynn Forester de Rothschild, proponents include Salesforce co-CEO Mark Benioff, McKinsey managing director Dominic Barton, and Pope Francis.
Criticisms of inclusive capitalism have come from the right and left. The libertarian Foundation for Economic Education criticized the movement for supporting policies which allegedly induced cronyism and exacerbated the ills of government intervention into the economy. Meanwhile, the social-democratic newspaper The Guardian has referred to inclusive capitalism as a “Trojan Horse” organized by economic elites to maintain the status quo while paying lip service to more progressive ideals.
Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican collects “commitments” from companies to institute left-of-center policies based on “inclusive capitalism” principles. As of April 2021, CICV has 298 commitments from 68 organizations.
Commitments involve four primary priority areas: “people,” “prosperity,” “planet,” and “principles of governance.” Commitments can be concrete goals, such as Allianz initiating five programs to support underprivileged children, or more abstract reform efforts, like Estee Lauder committing to “[address] racial inequality through learning” in 2020.
Involvement of the Vatican
Pope Francis and the Church hierarchy that forms the Vatican government have an advisory role at the Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican. Pope Francis has been described as the group’s “main advisor” and “moral leader.” Lynn Forester de Rothschild reached out to Pope Francis in 2016 after hearing him speak at the Vatican Global Forum where he expressed skepticism about modern capitalism which aligned with many of the views of inclusive capitalists. The leaders of CICV, known as the “Guardians,” meet annually with Pope Francis.
De Rothschild has said that she hopes Pope Francis will serve as a “moral base” for the inclusive capitalism movement.
Lynn Forester de Rothschild
Council for Inclusive Capitalism was founded and is chaired by Lynn Forester de Rothschild, a former lawyer and businesswoman who married Evelyn de Rothschild of the Rothschild financial dynasty. She has been described as an “old friend” of Bill and Hillary Clinton. Lynn Forester served as a member of the National Information Infrastructure Advisory Committee and the secretary of the Energy Advisory Board under President Bill Clinton. Lynn Forester and Evelyn de Rothschild were introduced by Henry Kissinger at a Bilderberg Meeting, and spent their honeymoon in the White House during President Clinton’s administration.
Lynn Forester de Rothschild is currently the chief executive of E.L. Rothschild, a private investment company. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Chatham House, the International Advisory Council of Asia House, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and the Foreign Policy Association, and she is a board member of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, the Alfred Herrhausen Society of International Dialogue of Deutsche Bank, the Elumelu Foundation, the International Advisory Board of Columbia University School of Law, Fondo per L’Ambiente Italiano, and the ERANDA Foundation.
Meredith Sumpter is the CEO of CICV and its sister-group Coalition for Inclusive Capitalism. Sumpter was an investment management executive at Eurasia Group and BowerGroupAsia. Previously, she worked at the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for five years as a diplomat and analyst. She also served as a legislative aide for Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) for two years.
Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican is led by the “Guardians,” 26 business, nonprofit, and union leaders. Combined, the organizations represented by the Guardians control $10.5 trillion in assets, have a $2.1 trillion market capitalization, and “represent” 200 million workers. As of April 2021, the Guardians are:
- Ajay Banga, executive chairman of Mastercard
- Oliver Bate, chairman of the board of management of Allianz
- Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce
- Edward Breen, CEO of Dupont
- Sharan Burrow, general secretary of International Trade Union Confederation
- Mark Carney, former governor of Bank of Canada and Bank of England
- Brunello Cucinelli, executive chairman of Brunello Cucinelli
- Carmine di Sibio, CEO of EY
- Roger Ferguson Jr., CEO of TIAA
- Kenneth Frazier, CEO of Merck
- Fabrizio Freda, CEO of Estee Lauder
- Marcie Frost, CEO of CalPERS
- Alex Gorsky, CEO of Johnson & Johnson
- Angel Gurria, secretary general of the OECD
- Alfred Kelly, CEO of Visa
- William Lauder, executive chairman of Estee Lauder
- Bernard Looney, CEO of BP
- Fiona Ma, Democratic politician and California State Treasurer
- Hiro Mizuno, board member of Principles for Responsible Investment
- Brian Moynihan, CEO of Bank of America
- Ronald O’Hanley, SEO of State Street
- Lynn Forester de Rothschild, chairman of the Coalition for Inclusive Capitalism
- Rajiv Shah, president of the Rockefeller Foundation
- Tidjane Thiam, special envoy on COVID-19 of the African Union
- Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation
- Mark A. Weinberger, former CEO of EY