IFRS Foundation Trustees: key acknowledgements not addressed in strategy

by Carol A Adams Main points: the IFRS Foundation Trustees’ response to feedback acknowledges some key findings of research; some matters acknowledged by the Trustees are not (currently) incorporated into their strategy. Research demonstrates the urgent need for mandatory sustainability reporting standards to achieve sustainable development and also that such standards need to be enforced […]

US Council of Institutional Investors taking an interest in SEC position on climate and diversity disclosures

Main points: The US Council of Institutional Investors is considering views on climate change and diversity disclosure. Some key stakeholders have views that might be considered ‘yesterday’s thinking’ in Europe with a limited view of what is financially material. The SEC is currently seeking public input on climate disclosure. The sustainability reporting and materiality debate […]

Sustainable development as our ‘north star’ in the harmonisation debate

by Carol A Adams Main points: provides a summary of what matters in the debate on the harmonisation of sustainability reporting; sustainable development/ the SDGs are taken as the guiding ‘north star’. Definition of sustainability reporting “Sustainability reporting is an organization’s practice of reporting publicly on its most significant economic, environmental and social impacts, and […]

Connecting the COVID-19 pandemic, ESG investing and calls for ‘harmonisation’ of sustainability reporting

by Carol A Adams and Subhash Abhayawansa Highlights: Summarises key materials informing efforts to harmonise sustainability reporting; Analyses approaches of key standard setters; Argues that: financial materiality should not be paramount in determining sustainability disclosures; investor needs cannot be satisfied by consistent and comparable metrics alone; harmonisation calls overlook needs of non-investor stakeholders. Abstract We […]

Heading in the wrong direction: IFRS and its band

by Carol A Adams Main points: Recent contributions to the sustainability reporting debate are still contradictory. The key ‘players’ are heading in a direction that will not lead to transformation. Some organisations/individuals are welcoming each new opposing contribution. There is a need for more evidence based analysis. The madness in the discourse on the ‘harmonisation’ […]

EU v IFRS: Fundamentally different approaches to sustainability reporting

by Carol A Adams Main points: The IFRS Foundation and EU/EFRAG approaches are opposed in all key aspects. The EU/EFRAG approach is likely to contribute to addressing sustainable development (including climate change). The IFRS Foundation approach likely won’t. The IFRS Foundation has the backing of IOSCO, but the EU has legislative powers. Yesterday, I received […]

A prototype climate disclosure standard with a flawed conceptual framework

by Carol A Adams At the end of 2020 various organisations jointly released a ‘prototype’ climate-related financial disclosure standard cobbled together in some haste from existing offerings. Whilst anyone familiar with TCFD, integrated reporting and GRI Standards is likely to be favourably disposed to the proposed reporting requirements, the conceptual framework underpinning them is flawed. […]

Issues, solutions and options for IFRS on sustainability reporting

Focussing on the issues, solutions and options for achieving them rather than the consultation questions posed, Professors Abdelsalam, Craig, Mueller, Slack and myself made this research-informed submission to the IFRS Foundation Trustees for Durham University Business School’s Ethical Finance, Accountability and Governance Centre. To:         Erkki Liikanen, Chair of the IFRS Foundation Trustees From:    […]

Sustainable development is too important for self-interest and political posturing

by Carol A Adams and Charles H Cho In their Green Paper Richard Barker and Robert Eccles claim to contribute, in a “neutral way”, to the ongoing debate on sustainability reporting standards and who should set them. We are not neutral. We believe that sustainable development issues are urgent, complex and that they present an […]

Research supporting submission to IFRS from Professors of Accounting researching Sustainability Accounting and Reporting

The signatories to the Open Letter to the Chair of the IFRS Foundation Trustees here provide references to independent peer reviewed academic research supporting their summary of research findings. The Open Letter was submitted by Professors of Accounting researching sustainability accounting and reporting regarding in response to the IFRS Trustees’ Consultation Paper on Sustainability Reporting […]