GRI and SASB announce collaboration Tweet This!
The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) announced a collaborative workplan.
For companies that use both standards the reporting effort can be considerable and, to help address this, the two organisations will collaborate to show how some companies have used both sets of standards together and the lessons to be shared. SASB and GRI also seek to help consumers of sustainability data understand the similarities and differences in the information from these standards.
Tim Mohin, Chief Executive of GRI, said: “GRI and SASB share the guiding principle that transparency is the best currency for creating trust among organizations and their stakeholders.” “Investors, policy makers, civil society and other stakeholders are demanding improved disclosure of information on sustainability impacts, including those likely to drive risk and opportunity in both the short and long term.”
“In a post-COVID world, companies will increasingly be expected to disclose their performance on a range of ESG topics,” said Janine Guillot, CEO of SASB. “The pandemic has demonstrated that so-called ‘non-financial’ information can indeed highlight material financial implications. This makes the collaboration between SASB and GRI, and the increased clarity it will bring for all stakeholders, all the more timely.”
The collaboration will initially focus on helping stakeholders better understand how the standards can be used concurrently, through examples based on real-world reports. These resources are planned to be delivered within 2020.
GRI and SASB provide compatible standards for sustainability reporting, intended to fulfill different purposes and based on different approaches to materiality:
- SASB’s industry-specific standards identify the subset of sustainability-related risks and opportunities most likely to affect a company’s financial condition (e.g., its balance sheet), operating performance (e.g., its income statement) or risk profile (e.g., its market valuation and cost of capital).
- The GRI Standards focus on the economic, environmental and social impacts of a company, and hence its contributions – positive or negative – towards sustainable development. Users of the GRI Standards identify issues that are important to their stakeholders. If not already financially material at the time of reporting, these impacts may become financially material over time. They provide both the framework and supporting standards on a wide range of sustainability topics and are aligned with international instruments for responsible business behaviour.
For both GRI and SASB, providing clarity on the application of their reporting standards and helping others understand how to use sustainability performance data, is critical to meeting every stakeholder’s needs.
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