Washington D.C. – At the 2019 Center for Accounting Research and Education (CARE) Conference, AccountAbility CEO, Mr. Sunny Misser, spoke on the Sustainability, Accounting and Responsible Investing panel about good governance in business, the key drivers of global corporate sustainability, and the leading trends in sustainability reporting and disclosure.
When asked about the primary drivers of sustainability reporting and disclosure, Mr. Misser cited pressure from a variety of stakeholder groups, including investors, consumers, employees, regulators and the media.
“In 2011, less than 5% of the S&P 500 companies published sustainability reports, but due to increasing stakeholder pressure and public scrutiny over the past several years, over 86% of S&P 500 companies now publish annual sustainability reports,” said Mr. Misser.
When asked to share his perspective on the key trends in reporting and disclosure based on AccountAbility’s work with global Fortune 500 companies, Mr. Misser predicted that, given the growing number of sustainability disclosure frameworks and indices – which have increased from 10 to 182 in the past 10 years –consolidation, industry specialization and compliance will be the next big trends.
Additionally, Mr. Misser emphasized the leading role of the UN Sustainability Development Goals (UN SDGs) in shaping the future of reporting. “68% of countries and 62% of global companies have already made formal commitments to the SDGs, which are predicted to create a market of over $12 trillion USD and 300 million more jobs by 2030,” said Mr. Misser.
As companies strive to fulfill their commitments to the UN SDGs and to perform well in sustainability rankings and indices, they are increasingly seeking support to integrate sustainability into the DNA of the organization, reflected Mr. Misser. For instance, citing an AccountAbility survey, Mr. Misser noted that 72% of the global Fortune 250 now have a sustainability committee or subcommittee at the Board level.
Mr. Misser was joined on the panel by Dr. Hans Christensen, Professor at the University of Chicago; Dr. Jeffrey Hales, Chair, Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB); Ms. Bonnie Saynay, Global Head of Responsible Investment, Invesco; and Mr. Gerben de Zwart, Head of Quant Equities, APG.
For more information on AccountAbility’s insights, or to learn how AccountAbility can help your organization, please contact us at www.accountability.org.