CSRI Position Paper (1-16):
Making (more) Connections
Sustainability Reporting Vs. Social Compliance Assessments
The objective of this paper is to examine the resemblance and the difference between Sustainability Reporting (Global Reporting Initiative G4 based) and Social Compliance Assessments (SCAs) (based on the Ethical Trading Initiative Base Code). The purpose of this paper is to "make the connection" between these two leading social performance methodologies, to pinpoint the similarities and examine whether the differences can or should contribute to corporations organizational efforts to create social value and manage ESG risks. Furthermore, correspondingly, to lay out the challenges and gaps that may arise while deciding which aspects to address in the corporate sustainability report.
This paper identifies a high “match” between most of the aspects in the GRI G4 guidelines and the ETI Base Code, as both aim at improving the social, environmental and economic performance of an organization, considering the well‐being of a wide range of stakeholders and requiring the engagement of stakeholders in the process. However, the comparison between the two standards recognizes some substantial gaps in the reporting guidelines with regards to working hours and wages issues. These gaps may highly affect the transparency of the sustainability reporting and miss the initial purpose of sustainability reporting.
Key Words – sustainability reporting, GRI, ETI, social compliance, ESG, stakeholders, transparency.
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