SustainAbility’s published fourth international benchmark of corporate sustainability reporting

Source: SustainAbility, 13 November 2006

Tomorrow’s Value, SustainAbility’s fourth international benchmark of corporate sustainability reporting, has once again been developed in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Standard & Poor’s. This year we introduce a revised methodology, developed in close consultation with experts and leading corporate reporters, and — in line with our sense that the focus also needs to shift beyond disclosure and reporting to communication — we have adopted a portfolio approach. Tomorrow’s Value is the flagship document in a suite of publications exploring wider aspects of reporting, including communication with financial analysts and the wider innovation agenda.
The field is currently extremely dynamic, with new entrants making up half of the 50 Leaders. Strikingly, half of the Leading 50 companies are complete newcomers, including four entrants from non-OECD countries. The pressures driving improved sustainability reporting continue to grow, with the Global Reporting Initiative’s recently launched G3 guidelines
providing renewed impetus in terms of international standardisation. In parallel, the slow, grudging awakening of financial markets is being accelerated by growing concerns around climate change.

Tomorrow’s Value asks the question: How far has the value lightbulb switched on in corporate brains and boardrooms?
On current evidence, the answer is that the links between the evolving sustainability agenda and wider market opportunities
are now better understood — with a small number of companies reporting the relationship with value in increasingly interesting ways. Partly as a result, some parts of the financial community are gearing up their use of non-financial, extra-financial and/or sustainability disclosures to better understand emerging environmental, social and governance risks. Nonetheless, our expert panel concluded that most companies are still missing an important opportunity to communicate with financial analysts and institutions.