Meaningfully measuring the sustainability of business.
Image: Michael Olsen/Unsplash
World Economic Forum - 15 Jun 2022
  • Expectations of the purpose of business, as well as how companies operate and deliver is evolving.
  • The Forum understands the challenges they face and supports progress on convergent sustainability reporting standards.
  • The lack of a universal sustainability reporting standard poses an obstacle to measuring the sustainability of business and tackling climate change.

Ten years ago did you consider which bank you used based on its green credentials, did you know anyone who was vegan, did it matter to you whether the company you worked for had a green ethos, and were your children learning about recycling, reuse and ecosystems in school? Possibly not, but odds are you do now.

In an era where conscious choices are being made about the environmental viability of every aspect of our lives, sustainability touches everyone and everything. It has to: an increasing number of the conditions necessary to human life as we know it are disappearing, and we now recognize that we’re responsible for this situation.

People care and green consciousness is growing

Fortunately, people care – and increasingly so. Yes, there are many other issues high on boardroom, policy and consumer agendas – whether it’s conflict in Ukraine, rising energy prices or the continued fallout of COVID-19 – but a sustainability mindset has taken hold and environmental literacy is stronger than ever, blazing an irreversible trend.

People care, making ever-more sustainable choices in every aspect of their lives. Image: Elaine Casap/Unsplash

This has transformational repercussions for business; those companies that embrace sustainability as an integral part of their operating model are seeing their value increase. This is not just in terms of profits, but also in higher staff retention and engagement, greater customer loyalty, and improved access to markets and funding. With this shift towards sustainability come improving examples of best practice, better short, medium and long-term targets and regulation.