Integrated Reporting

 
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Updated GRI Standards: What Are the Implications for Materiality?

On October 5th, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) announced the biggest update of its standards since 2016. Beyond legal requirements, the GRI has been identified as one of the most comprehensive and internationally recognized sustainability standards setter for corporate reporting. Scheduled to be applicable by 2023, these changes require companies to increase their level of transparency and to dedicate further resources into non-financial reporting. One of the key updates is the introduction of sector standards, providing additional guidelines for comparability of companies from the same industries. Another important change in the GRI Universal Standards is the revised approach on how organization should conduct their materiality assessment. This article focuses on the proposed changes and what it means for companies which have selected the GRI Standards as their ESG reporting framework.
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How to Strengthen ESG Reporting with the Updated GRI Standards

In the corporate world, sustainability reporting requirements are continuously increasing through national and international directives. In the EU, the upcoming Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) will impact the reporting guidelines of a large number of European companies. Beyond legal requirements, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) have been identified as the most comprehensive and internationally recognized sustainability standards setters for corporate reporting. At the end of 2020, GRI counted more than 38,000 GRI reports from organizations, including 73% of the world's 250 largest companies.
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Impact of Sharpened ESG Reporting Requirements

Non-financial reporting regulations are evolving at a high pace – especially in Europe. Spurred by the need to redirect finance towards achieving the EU Green Deal and the Paris Agreement, companies will have to become more transparent on their environmental and social impacts, and their strategy to mitigate ESG risks. But before you can ‘talk the walk’, you’ll need to figure out how to walk, and where towards. This article gives a brief overview of the implications of the most important European non-financial reporting requirements for companies operating in Europe, and how to get ready for them.
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ESG Essentials: Focused and Lean Reporting

Spurred by regulation and investor interest, more companies than ever are reporting on core ESG topics by publishing integrated or separate corporate sustainability reports. Simultaneously, more than $1tn in total assets under management in funds are now abiding by ESG principles, and legislation is catching up. While investors and policy makers are becoming stronger advocates for ESG disclosure, companies struggle to strike the balance between efforts and results. Focused and lean reporting combined with efficient responding to relevant external ESG rating requests can help to resolve this dilemma.
Keeping up with the Rise of ESG Investing

Keeping Up with the Rise of ESG Investing Strategies

As their customers are increasingly asking for greener portfolio options, investors are left struggling to integrate sustainability into their portfolio management strategies. The main challenge for investors is coming from ESG data itself, which has remained scattered, incomplete, incoherent, and unstructured.
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Are You Among 2018’s DJSI Sustainability Stars?

On 13th September 2018, RobecoSAM and S&P Dow Jones Indices announced the results of the annual Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) review. We are happy to announce that all our customers from eight different countries entered or continued their inclusion in the DJSI, of which four are now industry leaders. Among the companies that were newly added in this year’s Indices are Diageo, General Mills, Assicurazioni Generali, and BBVA whereas Henkel, BASF, and Bayer have been deleted from the index.
Less is More – the Materiality Conundrum

Less is More – the Materiality Conundrum

It sounds contradictory: Less is More. However, it is highly relevant for the sustainability focus of corporations. Companies often slip into the trap of focusing on too many ESG issues that are not material to their business. Solid research has shown that focusing performance on ESG issues that are truly material has a positive effect on total shareholder returns. So companies should concentrate on enhancing their impact in fields that matter the most. By committing to a select number of ESG issues, companies can unleash the full potential of their materiality matrices.
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It's Time to Get Serious about Materiality

Last year, research among WBCSD member companies on sustainability and risk disclosures revealed that only 29% of material topics as published in the sustainability report were also included in the company’s legal disclosure of risks. Amazingly enough, for 35% of member companies this disclosure dropped to zero(!) demonstrating a feeble link between sustainability reporting and Enterprise Risk Management. With the launch of a public consultation on fiduciary duties and sustainability by the European Commission in November 2017, the increase of the interest in this topic is likely to further expand.
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DJSI Services: Real Impact from Benchmarking

The demand from investors and institutions for ESG information increasingly puts pressure on companies. However, reporting activities often take up much time at the expense of creating real impact. As a European expert we see a lot of value in actively engaging in the leading ESG-benchmarks such as Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and CDP, but at the same time the struggle that companies have to leverage all the efforts they have put into filling out the (sometimes very demanding) questionnaires.
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Don’t Get Snowed In This Reporting Season

In 2017, the WBCSD’s Reporting Exchange initiative identified over 1,750 reporting requirements and resources across 60 countries and 70 sectors, with a steep increase on climate disclosures since 2015. While transparency is necessary, one of the unwelcome consequences is that sustainability departments end up spending too much of their time on reporting at the expense of generating real impact.
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