GRI Grows to Become Leading CSR Framework

By Tyler Collins

The Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Reporting Guidelines ranks among the top corporate social responsibility (CSR) instruments among large European companies, according to recent research from the European Commission.

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a non-profit organization that promotes corporate sustainability reporting. It was created in 1997 by Ceres, a national network of investors, environmental groups, and other public interest organizations.

Thousands of organizations now use the GRI’s Sustainability Reporting Framework, the organization’s family of reporting guidelines, in order to understand and communicate their environmental, economic, and social sustainability performance.

Since releasing its first Reporting Guidelines in 2000, its global network has grown to more than 600 organizational stakeholders and over 30,000 people representing different sectors and constituencies. GRI has also developed key strategic partnerships with the United Nations Environment Programme, the UN Global Compact, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the International Organization for Standardization.

GRI’s Deputy Chief Executive Teresa Fogelberg said, “If we are to truly achieve the transition to a sustainable global economy, there is an urgent need for all companies to embrace sustainability disclosure. The question to answer is no longer ‘Why report?’ but ‘Why are you not reporting?’”

Despite its staggering success, there is still room for improvement. While 95% of the world’s largest companies produce sustainability reports, overall less than 10% of publicly traded and trans-national companies report on their sustainability practices.

A proud supporter of the GRI, First Affirmative has been a member of the Ceres network of companies since it was first founded in 1989 with the creation of the Valdez Principles—now the Ceres Principles—in response to the catastrophic Exxon Valdez oil spill. Only 20 years later, Ceres has a growing network of over 80 companies, 130 NGOs, and $7 trillion of investor assets.

More information about Ceres and the Ceres 20Ÿ20 vision.

Posted: April 18, 2013