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Leveraging G4 to Standardize Sustainability Reporting across Global Platforms


Corporate Responsibility Association

Published on the CRA website, this blog talks about the implications of the fourth-generation (G4) Sustainability Reporting Guidelines on the global reporting environment.

Excerpt from the blog

"The fourth-generation (G4) Sustainability Reporting Guidelines developed by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) may well have complicated the reporting environment, instead of streamlining it. Launched in May 2013, and mandatory for reports published after 31 December 2015, the G4 tries to harmonize with other international reporting frameworks, instructing reporters to focus on material topics or aspects instead of outlining their organization’s broad sustainability footprint. With renewed interest and attention on corporate social responsibility, companies are pulling out all the stops to ensure that their sustainability initiatives occupy center stage. They are interested in measuring the effect of their sustainability programs, to identify new opportunities, while remaining informed on risks. Program disclosures are in the form of detailed reports, full of catchy phrases and engaging visuals to invite larger readership.

The G4 is therefore an important framework to guide such initiatives. While its strategic and focused approach is laudatory, and can improve enterprise-wide transparency, the G4 has been met with apprehension for a number of reasons."