The GISR standard will comprise three components: principles, issues and indicators. The principles identify the core attributes of a ratings framework applicable to all sustainability ratings, rankings and indices. Issues are themes, topics or aspects of sustainability material used to assess a company’s sustainability performance, such as water stewardship and carbon emissions.
The 12 principles are: transparency, impartiality, continuous improvement, inclusiveness, assurability, materiality, comprehensiveness, sustainability context, long-term horizon, value chain, balance and comparability.
GISR says the year-long effort included participation from leaders in the investment and corporate communities including Aviva, Deutsche Bank, Bloomberg, BBVA, TIAA-CREF and UBS, which are members of GISR’s core committees; and AMD, UPS, Vale, Disney, Bosch and Bayer, which are members of GISR’s technical working group.
Launched by Ceres and the Tellus Institute in 2011, GISR is a global nonprofit initiative that aims to accelerate the integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues and indicators into global financial markets and investment decision-making. GISR will not rate companies on sustainability measures, but will instead accredit sustainability ratings, rankings or indices that meet certain standards of excellence for assessing corporate sustainability performance.
Currently, more than 100 rating systems are evaluating various aspects of the ESG performance of more than 10,000 companies using more than 400 issues and 2,000 indicators. In collaboration with the sustainability ratings community, NGOs, investors and companies, GISR aims to further harmonize and expand the global market for high quality sustainability ratings, rankings and indices.