Chapter 11

The Future of Business Sustainability: Sustainability Reporting and Assurance

Business sustainability is a process of creating sustainable value for all stakeholders by focusing on profit, planet, and people. Sustainability reporting and assurance is an evolving corporate practice with significant potential to improve the transparency and reliability of information for investors and stakeholders. Many global professional organizations including the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the International Integrated Reporting Committee (IIRC) are working to develop a set of globally accepted, uniform, and standardized sustainability reporting guidelines. The GRI initially focused on a triple bottom line of economic, social, and environmental performance, with version 3.1 (also the third generation or G3) of its sustainability framework. The fourth generation (G4) will cover economic, governance, social, and environmental performance.


The existing sustainability reports are rather complex and unstandardized. They are composed of disclosures of both voluntary and mandatory information on some aspects of economic, global, social, ethical, and environmental (EGSEE) sustainability performance dimensions, and typically encouraged by GRI guidance. The IIRC promotes integrated reporting aimed at solidifying the link between sustainability and economic value by focusing on the interrelationships between the economic, social, environmental, and ...

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