Identify corporate governance risk within portfolio companies.


A data-driven scoring and screening solution designed to help institutional investors review a company’s quality factors and assess risk.

Scores provide an indication of relative quality and are supported by factor-level data that is critical to the research process, while historical scores and data provide greater context and trending analysis to understand a company’s approach to governance over time.

As governance factors play a heightened role in investment decision-making, Governance QualityScore provides investors with invaluable data and insight to support their analysis.

Governance QualityScore uses a numeric, decile-based score that indicates a company’s governance risk across four categories. Click the image to view specific categories.

View recent updates to the Governance QualityScore methodology ›


QualityScore in Practice


Governance QualityScore supports investors as they consider governance in their quality analyses and incorporate unique compensation, board, and shareholder responsiveness data into management assessments.

  • Decile scores provide a snapshot view of risk
  • Red flags identify the companies or behaviors in need of further analysis
  • Supporting factor-level data and summary of key risks provide critical insight
  • User-friendly tools to screen and monitor potential governance risk in your portfolios
  • Profile reports that highlight key facts to facilitate issuer engagement
  • Ability to benchmark peers for deeper perspective
  • Flexible delivery methods, including online screening platform, data feeds, profiles, and access to underlying data


Governance QualityScore global coverage comprises of approximately 6,000+ companies in 30 markets, aligning with local market indices, including constituents of the U.S. Russell 3000, Canadian S&P/TSX Composite, STOXX600, S&P/NZX 50, S&P/ASX 300, JPX-Nikkei 400, and the main European local market indices including the UK FTSE All-Share (ex-investment trusts.)

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Governance QualityScore also includes widely held companies in ISS ESG’s coverage universe for Brazil, China, Hong Kong, and India. The term “widely held” refers to companies that ISS ESG designates as such based on their membership in a major index and/or the number of ISS ESG clients holding the securities.

ISS ESG conducts an annual review to determine opportunities to expand our global coverage to meet the needs of investors globally.



Governance QualityScore uses a numeric, decile-based score that indicates a company’s governance risk relative to their index or region. A score in the 1st decile (QS:1) indicates relatively higher quality governance practices and relatively lower governance risk, and, conversely, a score in the 10th decile (QS:10) indicates relatively higher governance risk. Companies receive an overall QualityScore and a score for each of four categories: Board Structure, Compensation/ Remuneration, Shareholder Rights, and Audit & Risk Oversight.

The Governance QualityScore methodology focuses on the qualitative aspects of governance, including global governance standards and alignment with ISS voting policy in each region.

ISS ESG’s annual methodology review ensures that the methodology remains in step with the ISS benchmark policies as they adapt to reflect developments in regulatory and market practice.

  • Over 220 factors are analyzed, with the specific factors under analysis varying by region.
  • Each factor is assigned a weight, based on an understanding of the impact of governance practices, ISS voting policy, and prevailing governance standards within each region.
  • Global comparability on core governance factors enable investors to benchmark core governance practices and risks for companies across markets and regions.
  • Scores are refreshed daily and are relative to an index or region.
  • Issuers are invited to review and verify their data through routine data verification.
  • Year-round focus, with event-driven data updates for capturing changes to a company’s governance structure on an ongoing basis.



Investors can search, screen, and filter data in ways that suit their needs.


Use ISS ESG’s proprietary DataDesk platform for insight into a company’s corporate governance structures, quick drill-downs into particular areas of concern, and deep dives into underlying governance data.


Connect your internal platform to the Governance QualityScore API to directly access Profiles and drill into the key risks, to easily bring governance insight into investment decisions and proxy voting processes.


Easily ingest the files through your own internal processes and highlight scores within internal workflow platforms.


Governance QualityScore company profiles are available through Open:FactSet and FactSet’s research manager, while the pillar score and the category scores are accessible in the universal screener and MS Excel add-in.

Governance QualityScore Profiles provide a summary of key risks and detail the governance factors used in determining the company’s scores, including data changes over time and their impact on the company’s score.

Red flag identifiers highlight the areas raising the risk profile; green stars indicate the areas of stronger governance. A Market Alignment field on the Governance QualityScore profile helps identify how a company’s practice for each factor compares to others within its region, furthering the ability to benchmark companies against their peers.


Review, verify, and provide feedback on the data used to determine the Governance QualityScore.

Trust ESG Rankings to help you manage ESG risks & seize investment opportunities.


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Search for a company’s QualityScore and identify possible investment concerns based on governance risk signals.
This sample search is available for a subset of the full QualityScore universe. To search or screen companies across the full coverage universe or to access a full company profile, please contact us
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Access to the search function is temporarily unavailable as ISS begins the QualityScore launch process. Updated scores will be available beginning November 21st.

Governance Categories
  • Board Structure
  • Compensation/Remuneration
  • Shareholder Rights and Takeover Defenses
  • Audit and Risk Oversight

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