Quality data is crucial to accelerate progress on the SDGs
Published date: 28 July 2022
New resource from GRI and UN Global Compact to spearhead global momentum on SDGs reporting
At the midpoint in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, greater multi-stakeholder action is essential to achieve the Global Goals. To help organizations report on progress, a new publication offers the most comprehensive inventory yet for the disclosures that relate to each SDG goal and target, drawing from international frameworks and standards.
A fully updated edition of Business Reporting on the SDGs: An Analysis of the Goals and Targets, from Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the United Nations Global Compact, is now freely available. Paving the way for improved aggregation of relevant information across companies and sectors, the publication was unveiled at a GRI - UN Global Compact side event, during the UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.
First published in 2017, this new version reflects the latest GRI Universal, Topic and Sector Standards, and the 2022 edition of the UN Global Compact Communication on Progress questionnaire. It also incorporates metrics from 26 disclosure sources, including those of CDP, SASB, UN Guiding Principles, World Benchmarking Alliance, World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and the World Economic Forum.
The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2022, published this month by UN Statistics, warns that the COVID-19 pandemic, exacerbated by the Russia-Ukraine war, is rolling back progress on the SDGs. With significant data gaps identified for eight out of 17 of the Global Goals, it emphasizes why countries and companies need to step up their efforts to ensure internationally comparable reporting.
It is only by accelerated action, with greater accountability from all actors, that the global community will be able to increase the pace of progress and get the SDGs back on track. Accurate and robust reporting from the private sector offers businesses, policymakers and other stakeholders highly valuable data to inform how this can be achieved. Five years ago, GRI and UN Global Compact launched our original guidance on SDG reporting. Breaking down the collective challenges into measurable disclosures, based on globally recognized frameworks, this updated resource will help more companies to commit to consistent and comparable reporting on their impacts. Furthermore, this resource will help companies identify new business opportunities while contributing to a better world.”Peter Paul van de Wijs, GRI Chief External Affairs Officer
Transparency and accountability is an integral part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Measuring and reporting on their contributions and impacts on the SDGs can help businesses drive sustainability action. In the context of the social and environmental crises that our societies face, increased ambition by businesses is more needed than ever to achieve the SDGs.”Bernhard Frey, SDG Impact and Reporting Officer, UN Global Compact
GRI and the UN Global Compact thanks the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) for providing support for the new edition of An Analysis of the Goals and Targets.
The Action Platform for Reporting on the SDGs (2017-2020) was led by GRI and the UNGC and resulted in the development of guidance for companies to integrate the SDGs into their reporting processes. A series of resources were produced, including the 2017 edition of An Analysis of the Goals and Targets, and:
- Integrating the SDGs into Corporate Reporting: A Practical Guide (2018)
- In-Focus: Addressing Investor Needs in Business Reporting on the SDGs (2018)
- Reporting Examples: How Companies are Reporting on the SDGs (2020)
GRI has a range of SDGs reporting tools and guidance, an SDGs podcast series, as well as undertaking SDGs initiatives with governments and corporate partners. The GRI Business Leadership Forum on the SDGs is supporting collaboration with 16 participating companies.
As a special initiative of the UN Secretary-General, the United Nations Global Compact is a call to companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with Ten Principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. Their ambition is to accelerate and scale the global collective impact of business by upholding the Ten Principles and delivering the SDGs through accountable companies and ecosystems that enable change. With more than 15,000 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories based in over 160 countries, and 69 Local Networks, it is the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative — one Global Compact uniting business for a better world.