Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Credibility of CSR reports studied

A growing number of oil companies issue Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reports, which sometimes are called sustainability reports. These reports provide a company's stakeholders with nonfinancial information about corporate risk mitigation on social and environmental issues.

All types of industries file CSR reports, most of which are not independently verified. CSR reports worldwide disclose a wide range of information that varies widely between companies and also between countries. Naturally, this begs the question of whether any particular report can be believed.

Of oil and gas companies that publish CSR reports, 35% have their reports externally assured for accuracy, said a new study entitled Assure View. The study used CSR report archives from CorporateRegister.com Ltd., an online directory of CSR reports.

The study was sponsored by firms that conduct these external assurances. Study sponsors are SGS, KPMG, LRQA, and The Reassurance Network.

The study notes a relatively new approach is for a company to invite various individuals or organizations to form an independent advisory board or panel. Royal Dutch Shell PLC was among the 11 companies that issued panel reports last year.

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Blogger Rx said...

Sustainability Reports are becoming commonplace. They are often competing for awards. I must admit that Sustainability Reports are interesting to read.
Are they believable? I am not sure that all of the proper metrics are established. However, the Sustainability Reports represent a trend in the right direction. If Sustainability Reports represents real progress, then perhaps it is the Insurance industry that should make the awards, not the government.
After all, improving air quality, reducing worker accidents, protecting groundwater from pollution, and reducing landfills should have a labiality dollar value. Stakeholders want to know that safety and ecology are good investments. Likewise, measurements and responsibility reduce risk and lead to long-term economic success. Everyone wants to believe that the Sustainability Reports were based on traceable measurements and not just feel-good intentions.
As Sustainability Reports become more commonplace, there will be tighter scrutiny. Show me statistics, show me the measurements, show me the standards and I will believe. More importantly, I will invest.

October 27, 2008 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger marketing poshe said...

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