“Organizations rely on a diverse set of ‘capitals’ to function effectively,” says Emma Ringström, Sustainability Manager, Pulp and Performance Chemicals at AkzoNobel. By measuring these, she says, “We can find ways to make the most impactful improvements and ultimately increase business value.”
This month, Pure Strategies celebrates 20 years of providing sustainability consulting to companies such as Stonyfield Farms, Ben & Jerry’s, Seventh Generation and Walmart. Its team has been helping to build leading strategies, improve products and packaging, and shift supply chains toward better environmental and social performance for well over 100 organizations over their years of work.
A multi-industry initiative has introduced new protocols and tools for the responsible sourcing of tin, tungsten, tantalum, gold, and cobalt, as well as social, environmental and governance impacts of the extraction and processing of raw materials in international supply chains.
While measurement, disclosure and other forms of engagement were the dominant themes yesterday, day two of New Metrics ’17 saw brands, NGOs and solution providers digging deeper to reveal practical applications and concrete findings from where the rubber meets the road in the world of sustainability metrics.
The design and implementation of a Sustainable Product Optimization Tool
By Anna Shugoll
As Sustainable Brands' New Metrics '17 conference kicked off in Philadelphia on Monday, speakers from SASB, CSRLab, WRI, the World Happiness Summit and more presented a range of topics revolving around a few common themes: Correctly measuring what matters, disclosing material data and knowing your audience when you do.
From disclosure to performance: Building a virtuous loop
By Jessica Bast
Corresponding with the kick off of the 23rd UN Climate Change Conference (COP23), CDP has released a new report finding that over 100 of the world’s state and regional governments are taking action to address climate change, particularly in the short-term.
We need to make better decisions to avoid the potentially severe consequences for businesses operating in a deteriorated environment. The social and environmental megatrends will, over time, act as a drag on prosperity as the costs of basic inputs such as water, energy and land escalate in response to scarcity.
Our corporate partners were increasingly being asked to contextualize their sustainability goals and performance. They wanted to understand what tools were available and how to approach the issue of context. The Embedding Project’s Road to Context guide was written to help support this process.
Sustainability requires contextualization within thresholds. That’s what sustainability is all about.
Allen White, co-founder, Global Reporting Initiative
The part can never be well unless the whole is well.
Plato, Charmides, 380 BCE
The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) and the Cool Farm Alliance (CFA) — a nonprofit industry platform and creator of the Cool Farm Tool sustainable agriculture calculator — have signed a memorandum of understanding to improve alignment and reporting of farm-level metrics data. Through the partnership, TSC aims to make the process of reporting on farm-level metrics easier for farmers and food manufacturers.
One of the hallmarks of context-based sustainability (CBS) as an approach to performance accounting in business is that it features the use of organization- or company-specific metrics. Indeed, a basic tenet of CBS is that no two organizations are exactly alike and it makes sense, therefore, for them to use different metrics to assess their performance, all in accordance with their own materiality determinations.
Part Ten in a 10-Part Series by Reporting 3.0. See previous parts below.
“If you don't know where you're going, you might not get there,” U.S. baseball icon (and meister of understated irony) Yogi Berra famously stated. This quip accurately describes CSR / ESG incrementalism, which heads in a direction without a clear destination. By contrast, context-based multicapitalism (as advocated by Reporting 3.0) provides not only a clear destination, but also a timeline for tracking the rate of progress needed – across multiple, interrelated dimensions.
As more businesses make moves to align their operations and strategies with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the need for a common framework for reporting on the impacts and contributions of companies to the SDGs becomes more apparent.