CSRHub and Bloomberg – part 2

By Bahar Gidwani

Part 2 of a 2-part series

 

The first part of this post described the reasons iCompli and CSRHub decided to create the new ESG Metrics Brief report.  We thought it might be helpful to provide a concrete example of the kinds of information—and opportunities for action—that these reports create.

 

At number 8 on the 2014 Fortune list, Ford is a well-studied, multinational with a long history of interest in sustainability.  Ford has reported to the GRI since 2007, to CDP since 2006, and has won many awards and recognitions.  CSRHub has 139 different sources of information on Ford and 22,501 different ratings points.  Ford’s overall CSRHub rating of 60 puts it at the 71% percentile among the 118 motor vehicle manufacturers that CSRHub tracks.

 

The overview

The first chart in Ford’s ESG Metrics Brief provides a visual representation of this relative performance:

 

Ford CSRHub overall ratings

 

While overall performance is well above average, it is clear that of the four major categories of sustainability performance that CSRHub tracks, Ford is strongest in “employees” and weakest in “governance.”

 

The ESG Metrics Brief has access to CSRHub’s eight years of ratings history and a similar range of history from Bloomberg.  This chart shows how Ford’s CSRHub rating has changed over this time period.

 

ESG Metrics Brief CSRHub Rating

 

 

The ESG Metrics Brief next brings in other ESG sources from Bloomberg’s system.  Here is the relative performance for Ford as seen by ISS and by CDP.

 

ISS Governance QuickScore

 

 

CDP Performance Score

 

Drilling down

After a user has reviewed the overall situation for a company, he or she can “drill down” into each of the four main categories that CSRHub covers.  For instance, here is the change over time for Ford’s governance rating, compared to those of its peers.

 

CSRHub Governance Rating

 

The above chart uses CSRHub ratings.  Other sources and metrics drawn from Bloomberg help further explain Ford’s loss of competitive advantage compared to its peers in this area.  One factor may be a reduction in the amount and quality of Ford’s disclosures.

 

Bloomberg Gov Disc Score

 

A second factor could be the perception that Ford’s CEO compensation is out of line with that of its peers.

 

CEO compensation

 

Bloomberg tracks a wide array of metrics and policies that give users of the ESG Metrics Brief even more insight into this part of Ford’s sustainability behavior.

 

ESG Metrics Brief KPIs

 

CSRHub comparators

 

The bottom line

We believe that an ESG Metrics Brief will be a good starting point for those who want to understand one company’s sustainability performance.

 

  • The report is easy to obtain.  It takes three business days or less to generate each report.
  • The report is inexpensive.  Each report costs only $495—much less than the time and energy required for most researchers to generate something comparable, and far less than the cost to license the datasets.
  • The report is broad and comprehensive.  You get data on more than 120 indicators across all areas of sustainability.  Each report normally compares against between 10 and 30 peers.
  • The report helps inform the stakeholders in a sustainability strategy process.  You can share the report internally and help prove your case for new programs, further investments, and shifts in strategy.

 

We have more data than we can ever fit into any single report!  We look forward to getting feedback from our users about the ESG Metrics Brief and continuing to fine-tune it to meet their needs.

 

See more now, including a full sample, at  http://www.csrhub.com/content/icompli-csrhub-esg-metrics-brief/.

 

 


 

 

Bahar GidwaniBahar Gidwani is CEO and Co-founder of CSRHub.  He has built and run large technology-based businesses for many years. Bahar holds a CFA, worked on Wall Street with Kidder, Peabody, and with McKinsey & Co. Bahar has consulted to a number of major companies and currently serves on the board of several software and Web companies. He has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree in physics and astronomy. He plays bridge, races sailboats, and is based in New York City.

 

CSRHub provides access to the world’s largest corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information.  It covers over 15,000 companies from 135 industries in 132 countries. By aggregating and normalizing the information from 400 data sources, CSRHub has created a broad, consistent rating system and a searchable database that links millions of rating elements back to their source. Managers, researchers and activists use CSRHub to benchmark company performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices, and seek ways to improve corporate sustainability performance.

 

 

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Bloomberg ESG and CSRHub Benchmark – part 1

By Bahar Gidwani

Part 1 of a 2-part series

 

Sustainability professionals spend hundreds of thousands of dollars and months of time developing and managing their sustainability programs.  Most dread the almost inevitable question from their manager or their manager’s manager—”How are we performing relative to our peers?  Where are we doing well and where do we need to improve?”  The iCompli CSRHub ESG Metrics Brief is designed to make it easy to answer these questions in a fact-based and authoritative way.

 

Why has it been hard to get answers?

 

Sustainability managers know their own programs—and understand the data they generate and report.  However, hundreds of outside sources each form their own opinions on a company’s sustainability performance.  They use different criteria and come to different conclusions—and both their analysis methods and their viewpoints are not always readily available.

 

For instance, is Wal-Mart more socially responsible than Target?  The barriers to answering this question include:

 

  • Too much information – CSRHub contains 131 sources of sustainability information for Wal-Mart and 118 sources for Target.
  • Gaps in the data – 85 of the above data sources rate both company, but many sources are unique to only one of the two companies.
  • Broad range of comparable companies – CSRHub tracks 274 retail companies worldwide.  To fairly compare Wal-Mart and Target, one needs to put them into context against all of these other competitors.

 

Our new solution required combining two components

 

CSRHub’s database system maps, merges, and normalizes sustainability ratings from 425 sources.  It includes information from Wall Street firms such as Thomson, MSCI, EIRIS, and Trucost; data from non-governmental organizations such as CDP, GRI, Transparency.org and the UN Global Compact, and information from government databases, publications, and various types of certification and crowd sources.  By combining almost 80 million pieces of data, CSRHub can generate objective scores of the perceived sustainability performance for more than 15,000 companies in 132 countries.

 

CSRHub ratings process

 

 

The end result shows that Target is generally more sustainable than Wal-Mart—although Wal-Mart is seen has having better performance on environmental issues.

 

CSR Ratings for Target vs Walmart

 

This perception perspective helps identify where a particular company is weak or strong.  But, most corporate managers need to also see comparable sets of facts and figures, before they can invest in new projects or change their strategy.  The new ESG Metrics Brief combines CSRHub’s insights with the hard facts contained in Bloomberg’s well-respected ESG (Environment Social Governance) Database.

 

Bloomberg tracks data on more than 30,000 publicly-traded companies, from around the world.  Its data set includes information not only hundreds of data items its own staff gathers from public sources and company filings but also data from other major ESG sources such as Sustainalytics and ISS.  The result is a set of comprehensive reports on 6,969 companies in 77 countries.

 

ESG regions

 

 

Look for part 2 of this series to see a concrete example of the kinds of information—and opportunities for action—that the new ESG Metrics Brief’s create.

 

To see more now, including a full sample, go to www.csrhub.com/content/icompli-csrhub-esg-metrics-brief/.

 

 

 


 

 

Bahar GidwaniBahar Gidwani is CEO and Co-founder of CSRHub.  He has built and run large technology-based businesses for many years. Bahar holds a CFA, worked on Wall Street with Kidder, Peabody, and with McKinsey & Co. Bahar has consulted to a number of major companies and currently serves on the board of several software and Web companies. He has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree in physics and astronomy. He plays bridge, races sailboats, and is based in New York City.

 

CSRHub provides access to the world’s largest corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information.  It covers over 15,000 companies from 135 industries in 132 countries. By aggregating and normalizing the information from 400 data sources, CSRHub has created a broad, consistent rating system and a searchable database that links millions of rating elements back to their source. Managers, researchers and activists use CSRHub to benchmark company performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices, and seek ways to improve corporate sustainability performance.

 

 

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A New Title—“EHS and S”

By Bahar Gidwani

 

I recently attended my first National Association of Environmental Managers (NAEM) NAEMconference.  It was fabulous!  Good content and a nice mix of sustainability practitioners from both large companies, small companies, and various types of advisors.  I especially liked the fact that practically everyone I met was on the “front line”—measuring results, setting out strategies, and reporting progress.

 

One of things I noticed was that a number of the people at the conference had a job title I’d not seen before.  Instead of “Manager of EHS” or “Vice President, EHS” (the “EHS” acronym stands for “Environment Health and Safety”) the new title was “EHS and S.”

 

Apparently a lot of companies have realized that their environment, health, and safety experts know a lot about another “S”—“Sustainability.”  We at CSRHub have divided sustainability into four areas:  Community, Employees, Environment, and Governance.  I was told that many EHS managers (who had dealt in the past mostly with the Employees and Environment areas) were now being asked to also help with Community relations and with the sustainability reporting aspects of Governance.

 

This change makes a lot of sense to me.  EHS professionals (NAEM has members who work at 800 different companies) have firmly established their roles within their companies.  They are hands on and tied directly into daily operations.  Their reports often end up on the desk of their company’s CEO—because CEOs increasingly recognize that their company’s success depends on having a clean environmental record and on ensuring that their employees are safe and healthy.  EHS professionals have traditionally had a technical or engineering background.  This makes them comfortable with designing and implementing software-based tracking and reporting systems.  They are used to organizing and rationalizing processes that had not been looked at before, from a fact-based, statistical approach.

 

It seems that the new “S” role is often the result of collecting together programs that had previously been scattered across various areas.  Employee engagement programs, charitable giving, and product improvement processes are now being tied to and can contribute to the success of traditional EHS programs.

 

I suspect this shift may relate to the trend towards integrated reporting.  EHS professionals are used to submitting information to government regulators.  They understand how important it is to have data that is both accurate and auditable by outside third parties.  Integrated reporting is driving the “soft” parts of sustainability management toward greater accuracy and exposing them to scrutiny by both internal auditors and outside stakeholders such as investors and non-governmental organizations.

 

Next time you come to an NAEM conference, look at the cards you get.  I’m sure you’ll see many that sport an extra “S.”  Ask the question I did—“Does that extra letter mean you got another 1/3 added to your budget?”  I’m sure those you ask will laugh as hard as those did, as most have neither gotten more budget—or a raise—despite the extra burdens they’ve accepted.

 

 

Bahar GidwaniBahar Gidwani is CEO and Co-founder of CSRHub.  He has built and run large technology-based businesses for many years. Bahar holds a CFA, worked on Wall Street with Kidder, Peabody, and with McKinsey & Co. Bahar has consulted to a number of major companies and currently serves on the board of several software and Web companies. He has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree in physics and astronomy. He plays bridge, races sailboats, and is based in New York City.

 

CSRHub® provides access to the world’s largest corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information.  It covers over 15,000 companies from 135 industries in 132 countries. By aggregating and normalizing the information from 400 data sources, CSRHub has created a broad, consistent rating system and a searchable database that links millions of rating elements back to their source. Managers, researchers and activists use CSRHub to benchmark company performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices, and seek ways to improve corporate sustainability performance.

 

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Paris Climate Meeting Spreads Collective Responsibility

By: Carol Pierson Holding

 

Even in the best case, the Paris climate talks will fail to reduce greenhouse gases below the level at which our world will be disastrously altered. So the New York Times Editorial Board set a no less important goal in “What the Paris Climate Meeting Must Do:” “(foster) collective responsibility, a strong sense among countries large and small, rich and poor, that all must play a part in finding a global solution to a global problem.”

While countries’ emissions targets may not be enough, the climate talks may have already succeeded in fostering collective responsibility far beyond the U.N. members meeting in Paris. The fact that the talks were not cancelled after the ISIS attacks is further evidence of global resolve.

 

Leaders from every sphere, from the political to economic and business to media and beyond, are taking action, often expressly tied to the climate meeting.tiny house

 

Not that countries didn’t do their part. By requesting that each country submit a plan for emissions reductions ahead of the talks, U.N. organizers gave every country the opportunity to be a climate leader. Here in the U.S., the most widely reported of those announcements was September’s US/China “shiny new climate deal” as Grist called it. Hoping to spur real progress in Paris, the two countries updated their historic November 2014 climate agreement with concrete pledges, including Obama’s promise to reduce carbon emissions by 28 percent from 2005 levels and “China’s plans for a nationwide cap-and-trade scheme for 2017, a new $3.1 billion commitment from China to climate finance for poorer nations, and a common U.S.-China vision for December’s U.N. negotiations in Paris.”

 

Up here in the Pacific Northwest, the effect of the Paris climate talks is everywhere. In a front-page story in the Seattle Times, Microsoft announced that it has purchased a 520-acre forest as carbon credits, part of its program to offset 100% of carbon emissions. Microsoft used California’s cap-and-trade regulatory program, pointedly adding support for Washington State Governor Inslee’s Cap-and-trade program which has been stymied in Washington’s Republican legislature. Inslee is stepping up to enact the legislation through an executive order. To underscore his priorities, Inslee will attend the Paris talks.

 

Microsoft founder Bill Gates just announced in Paris a multi-billion dollar clean energy investment fund, another act intended to “give momentum to the two-week Paris climate talks.” He’s donating $1 billion of his own fortune and has gained additional commitments from 28 major investors and 20 nations, including the U.S., China and India. It’s the largest investment effort in history.

 

A lot of big money and big power is lining up for the climate, but what about fostering collective responsibility among citizens whose lifestyles will have to change in the new energy economy? As BloombergBusiness reported in October, “Americans Have Never Been So Sure About Climate Change – Even Republicans.” Crediting the UN climate talks among other factors, writer Tom Randall cites a massive shift in Republican acknowledgement that climate change is happening, now at 59%, up from 47% just six months ago, while acknowledgement among Democrats is at 90%.

 

What was once the environmental fringe is moving to the center. Just one example: the Home and Garden Network, in general a supporter of rampant consumerism in home décor, has renewed a program called Tiny House Hunters which celebrates extreme downsizing. A smaller A&E network runs at least three tiny house programs, including Tiny House Hunting, Tiny House Nation and Tiny House World, the latter two celebrating “minimalist lifestyles.”

 

From all the world’s nations to the billionaires investing in clean energy innovation to Americans moving to tiny houses, collective responsibility for the climate is a reality. And with everyone pushing in the same direction, we might just save ourselves.

 

Photo courtesy of Tammy Strobel via Flickr CC.

 


 

Carol2 Carol Pierson Holding is President and Founder, Holding Associates. Carol serves as Guest Blogger for CSRHub. Her firm has focused on the intersection of brand and social responsibility, working with Cisco Systems, Wilmington Trust, Bankrate.com, the US EPA, Yale University’s School of Environmental Sciences, and various non-profits. Before founding Holding Associates, Carol worked in executive management positions at Siegel & Gale, McCann Erickson, and Citibank. She is a Board Member of AMREF (African Medical and Research Foundation). Carol received her AB from Smith College and her MBA from Harvard University.

 

CSRHub provides access to corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information on 15,000+ companies from 135 industries in 132 countries. Managers, researchers and activists use CSRHub to benchmark company performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices and seek ways to change the world.

 

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CSRHub Named First Partner of SASB’s New Research & Insight Partnership Program

New York, December 3, 2015— Today The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board™ (SASB)™ announced that CSRHub® is the first partner of their newly launched Research & Insight Partnership Program, in which commercial and academic partners use SASB intellectual property (IP) to surface market trends and set benchmarks. SASB is a 501c3 non-profit organization that provides sustainability accounting standards for use by publicly listed corporations in the U.S.  CSRHub is a B Corporation that has built the world’s largest database of sustainability information.

 

Markets have started to recognize the materiality of select sustainability information. More research is needed in order to help corporate and investment professionals understand and manage this evolving field. To address this need, SASB has launched the Research & Insight Partnership Program.

 

CSRHub will kick off the partnership with a series of reports it is co-authoring with EKOS International. The reports analyze the state of sustainability disclosure and reporting trends at an industry level. This first report in the Sustainable Accounting Standings Series (SASS), which will focus on the Sustainable Industry Classification System™ (SICS™) Metals and Mining Industry, is available today at http://www.csrhub.com/content/sustainable-accounting-standings-series-sass-metals-and-mining-industry/

 

To request information on the Sustainable Accounting Standings Series, please contact Cynthia@csrhub.com.

To request information on the Research and Insight Partnership program, please contact Eli.Reisman@sasb.org.

 

About CSRHub

CSRHub® provides access to the world’s largest corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information service, covering 15,000+ companies in 132 countries. By aggregating and normalizing the information from 400+ data sources, CSRHub has created a broad, consistent rating system and a searchable database that links millions of rating elements back to their source. Managers, professionals, and academics use CSRHub to benchmark company and supply chain performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices, and seek ways to improve corporate sustainability performance. Subscribers can access 12 indicators and millions of detailed data points on employee, environment, community and governance performance. CSRHub is a B Corporation. For more information about CSRHub, visit www.csrhub.com or contact sales@csrhub.com.

 

CSRHub

 

About SASB

The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board™ (SASB)™ is an independent 501(c)3 organization that issues industry-specific standards for use in disclosing material sustainability information in filings to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP, and Mary Schapiro, former SEC chairman, serve as chair and vice chair of SASB’s Board of Directors, and Dr. Jean Rogers serves as Founder and CEO. More than 2,800 individuals representing $23.4T assets under management and $11T market capital have participated in multi-stakeholder industry working groups informing standards development. For more information about SASB, visit www.sasb.org, or follow us on YouTube, Twitter or LinkedIn.

 

  SASB

 

About EKOS International

EKOS International is a leading strategic sustainability consulting firm, helping companies understand sustainability as a key driver of competitive advantage and integrate CSR/sustainability into core strategy, brand and operations. EKOS partners with clients to develop and implement: improvements in business performance, breakthroughs in customer loyalty and competitive advantage, and sustainability platforms that drive profitability, innovation, value creation, brand value, and legacy. EKOS services include strategy development, benchmarking and best practices, Sustainability/CSR Reporting, employee and stakeholder education and engagement, crowdsourced innovation, and value stream optimization. For more information about EKOS International, visit www.ekosi.com.

 

EKOS International

 

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