In many markets, both in developed and developing countries, the call for increased transparency and accountability of the private sector is growing. Potential health and environmental risks posed by companies, and the goods and services they produce, are increasing pressure on them to generate, assess, and make information on their sustainability performance and impacts publicly available. In this sense Corporate Sustainability Reporting represents a potential mechanism to generate data and measure progress and the contribution of companies towards global sustainable development objectives as it can help companies and organizations measure their performance in all dimensions of sustainable development, set goals, and support the transition towards a low carbon, resource efficient, and inclusive green economy.
The Corporate Sustainability Reporting portfolio of work is embedded in UN Environment’s Resources and Markets Branch and more particularly within the Consumption and Production Unit which main goal is the promotion of sustainable production and consumption policies, practices and initiatives through the engagement of governments, the businesses community and civil society organizations.
As part of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting agenda, the Consumption and Production Unit hosts the Secretariat of the Group of Friends of Paragraph 47 (GoF47), a government-led initiative formed in 2012 during the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20) to advance recommendations put forward under paragraph 47 of the outcome document ‘The Future We Want’. In addition, the Unit implements a number of activities including regional projects to facilitate the integration of sustainable practices by companies (SDG 12.6) in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals and to facilitate governments’ task of follow-up and review of the SDGs through higher quality and comparable information emerging from corporate reports.
- Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting - Tackling the Big Questions Around the Global Corporate Sustainability Reporting Agenda (UNEP, 2013).
- Raising the Bar – Advancing Environmental Disclosure in Sustainability Reporting (UNEP, 2015).
- Evaluating National Policies on Corporate Sustainability Reporting (UNEP, 2015).
- Sustainability Reporting in the Financial Sector - A Governmental Approach (UNEP, 2017).