Established in 2008, the Governmental Advisory Group is a high-level body that provides GRI with a direct source of advice from governments. It is an informal group with no constitutional role, thereby preserving GRI’s independence.
The Group enables GRI to better understand governments’ perspectives on their role in corporate social responsibility and sustainability reporting, while governments can benefit from more detailed knowledge of GRI’s work and achievements.
The Group is also a platform to exchange ideas and experiences between the members themselves; many governments are becoming more active in developing policies for sustainability reporting.
The mandate is to provide informal high-level feedback and advice to GRI. In fulfilling this function, the Governmental Advisory Group may:
To ensure transparency, the GRI Chair and/or Chief Executive will provide briefings on Group’s activities to governance bodies, as required.
The current members are delegates from: Austria, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, the USA and international governmental organizations - the OECD and UNEP.
The Governmental Advisory Group meetings are held twice a year: a virtual meeting in the spring and a second meeting in the fall, usually hosted by a member government.
The Group is comprised of individuals from governmental organizations. To ensure breadth of perspective, where possible it includes representatives from ministries and agencies with a direct interest in sustainability, CSR issues, and sustainability reporting. These include organizations such as ministries of foreign affairs, labor affairs, economic affairs, and environment, and parliamentary bodies, the European Union and intergovernmental organizations. GRI strives to recruit representatives from both OECD and non-OECD countries.
Membership is by invitation and is accepted on a voluntary basis. Members are invited to join the Group on the basis of their experience, track record of leadership, and ability to bring independent and innovative thinking to the table. Delegates can be invited to act as observers or guests. Arrangements are made to ensure there is continuity of membership between outgoing and incoming members.