Next the Impact Foundation?

by Carol A Adams Main points: You can talk about impact on sustainable development without talking about value BUT you can’t talk about value creation without knowing your impact If we don’t achieve the SDGs there won’t be any “enterprise value creation” Sustainable development issues have “synergies” with people and planet – not financial statements […]

Sustainability reporting and value creation

by Carol A Adams “…it would seem that the very tenets of the kind of society in which financial accounting plays a starring role are grounded in injustice masquerading as decency” Rob Gray (Gray 2006 p797) Abstract This paper revisits Rob Gray’s (Gray, 2006) critique of the state of sustainability reporting and its relationship with […]

JSE event: Towards Common Reporting Standards: Will it help achieve the aims of sustainable development?

Chief Sustainability Officer at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), Shameela Ebrahim, posed some very pertinent questions when we kicked of the JSE’s annual sustainability show case earlier today.  Her questions were: Why so many standards and what are the various standards meant to achieve? How directly relevant are they to achieving the aims of sustainable […]

Response to the IFRS Foundation consultation questions re their global Sustainability Standards Board

by Carol A Adams Main points: As formulated, this proposal is not in the public interest; The proposal is not cognisant of current investor and corporate best practice and findings of evidence-based research; A focus on the financial materiality of sustainable development issues is not in the long-term interests of investors, companies, society and governments […]

Open letter to the Chair of the IFRS Foundation Trustees from Professors of Accounting

Main points: Editors of accounting journals that publish research on sustainability accounting and reporting and Professors of Accounting who are key researchers in this field have written to the Chair of the IFRS Foundation Trustees. The letter summarises research relevant to the IFRS Foundation proposals to establish a Sustainability Standards Board. To:         Erkki Liikanen, Chair, […]

A response to the WEF and Big 4

By Carol A Adams Main points: The Big 4’s Stakeholder Capitalism and Sustainable Value Creation may do more harm than good. The approach is not informed by the body of relevant academic research nor a conceptual framework. Achieving the SDGs must inform reporting practice Once upon a time there was a glimmer of hope that […]

Who can harmonise better? Five myths in the debate about the future of sustainability reporting

by Carol A Adams Main points: A proliferation of bodies setting standards and frameworks has led to a proliferation of bodies claiming to ‘harmonise’ them. Five myths are prevailing to support claims to move the authority base for standards and reduce reporting requirements. Recommendations regarding the role of key players are proposed.  COVID-19 has intensified […]

Investors are asking the wrong questions about sustainability

by Carol A Adams When it comes to hitting the 2030 targets underpinning the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, considering risk alone will not cut it. Larry Fink’s recent emphasis on climate change risks and divesting in coal is significant, albeit a few decades late, but what about opportunities? And what about other sustainable development issues that […]

Examples of companies linking the SDGs to value creation

by Carol Adams Main points Examples of companies contributing to the SDGs through their overall strategy to create value Partnerships are important to achieving the SDGs and should be acknowledged In my 2017 report The Sustainable Development Goals, Integrated Thinking and the Integrated Report published by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) and […]

Towards better social and environmental impact reporting

by Carol A Adams Main points: Standards and guidance concerned with reporting on social and environmental issues are coalescing The UK Government seeks to increase social and environmental impact reporting The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide an impetus for impact reporting Approaches to the SDGs aligned with reporting frameworks and governance approaches provide a […]