Sustainability reports allow businesses and other organizations to disclose their performance on a range of economic, environmental, and social issues.
The number of organizations reporting on their sustainability performance has reached a record high. Each year, thousands of such reports are now issued.
Reporters are diverse, and include everyone from consumer brands such as Coca Cola and BMW, large companies from sectors including energy, technology and others through to global cities such as Melbourne and Amsterdam.
The information in reports is increasingly sought by investors, employees, consumers, regulators and others who are looking for information on how an organization is responding to critical sustainability issues including climate change, resource use, human rights and product responsibility.
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In 2008 the readers made it clear that transparency can help to build trust, but the readers arenÂ’t fools. They read these reports with a purpose and they want the truth, and particularly the whole truth - not just selective reporting where companiesÂ’ performance is good. The readers also told us that they want to see a link between sustainability issues and a companyÂ’s overall strategy. These were important insights. This time we look forward to hearing from the reporters too. What are the objectives reporters set in issuing a report? In the eyes of the readers, are these objectives being met? Finding answers to these questions will inform the continuing evolution of sustainability reporting.
Ernst Ligteringen, Chief Executive, Global Reporting Initiative
ACCA is proud to be partnering with the Global Reporting Initiative for this yearÂ’s Readers Choice Awards.For more than 20 years, ACCA has been campaigning to encourage organisations to report on the environmental impact of their activities. It supports the GRI mission to develop and promote standardised guidelines for reports, which will enable readers of those reports to more easily make comparisons between organisations and regions. ACCA will also be working to communicate details of the RCA survey through its network of more than 80 national offices and active centres.
Neil Stevenson, Executive Director of Brand at ACCA.
The survey of the readers of sustainability reports will give a clear indication of how effectively organisations are communicating these key issues. It is not a question of what reporting organizations think should be included - and avoided -in such reports, but of what the end users, investors, clients, environmentalist and other stakeholders want to see. ACCA has long campaigned for greater transparency in sustainability reporting and is wholeheartedly behind this initiative.
Roger Adams, Director of Policy at ACCA
The future of reporting should be clear: itÂ’s our last best hope to rebuild trust. But without a stronger alignment between readers and reporters this potential canÂ’t be fulfilled. With the Readers and Reporters survey, for the first time, weÂ’ll clearly see both sides of that story. I believe weÂ’ll find both radical differences in expectation and opportunities we havenÂ’t yet imagined.
Helen Spoor, Consultant, Futerra.
The 2010 ReaderÂ’s Choice Awards provides a unique opportunity to develop and share new insights from the Sustainability Reporting world, understanding whether reportersÂ’ objectives and readersÂ’ needs are aligned, whether this process is building trust amongst stakeholders and whether this is actually creating an impact on improving sustainability performance.
Etienne Yves Butruille Martinez, KPMG Sustainability Services.
Corporate Social Responsibility has always been the highest priority for the Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) & to the Tata Group, which works on a unique business model with 2/3rds of the group's holding company being held by charitable trusts, who invest the profits of the group into areas of social development including art, sports, healthcare, environment and education, among other areas. The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a path breaking initiative in the field of corporate governance and sustainability. We are pleased to be associated with it as the technology partner for GRI and will continue to support the success of this venture, particularly in today's world where business sustainability has become a paramount concern for all companies.
D P Nambiar, Director Human Resources for Tata Consultancy Services Europe
The Global Reporting Initiative has pioneered the development of the worldÂ’s most widely used sustainability reporting framework and is committed to its continuous improvement and application worldwide. This framework sets out the principles and indicators that organizations can use to measure and report their economic, environmental, and social performance.
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