An assessment of environmental indicator data quality in GRI sustainability reporting

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Boysen, Mark
Global Reporting Initiative
Environmental indicators
This project assessed whether the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) focuses on providing true environmental indicator reporting within its framework. The analysis focused on environmental indicator data quality through observation of the data collection process for a sustainability report. Participants showed satisfaction with the requested data in regards to future comparability and transparency, concerns with data reliability and stakeholder concerns and significant concerns with data gathering systems. A review of 2007 reporting identified a low level of complete environmental indicator reporting and a low level of independent assurance. The study recommends significant enhancements at the GRI and governmental level. At the GRI level, the study recommends mandatory assurance of reports to receive GRI designation. At the governmental level, the study recommends mandatory corporate reporting for larger organizations to limit data quality issues and raise the overall sustainability performance of those organizations having the largest potential impact on sustainability.
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