GLOBAL REPORTING INITIATIVE (GRI)
GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) is the independent, international organization that helps businesses and other organizations take responsibility for their impacts, by providing them with the global common language to communicate those impacts.
Established in 1997, GRI is the independent, international organization that helps businesses and other organizations to take responsibility for their impacts by providing them with the global common language to communicate those impacts. Today, more than 10,000 companies around the world use GRI for their sustainability reporting.
What GRI has to offer?
The GRI Standards are the world’s most widely used standards for sustainability reporting. They have been widely adopted by leading companies in more than 100 countries, and are referenced in policy instruments and stock exchange guidance around the world. Over 160 policies in more than 60 countries and regions reference or require GRI.
The business case for sustainability reporting
From the need to safeguard marine habitats to responding to pressures on natural resources and growing inequality, our world faces significant economic, environmental and social challenges. By doing business in a way that aligns long-term growth strategies with care for people and planet, organizations can play a crucial role in sustainable development. The GRI Sustainability Reporting Standards (GRI Standards) help organizations increase their transparency and communicate their sustainability contributions and impacts. By better understanding, managing and disclosing impacts, organizations can unlock benefits that inform decisions, reduce risks, improve business opportunities and strengthen stakeholder relationships. This, in turn, enables companies to demonstrate their contributions towards environmental stewardship and societal wellbeing.
Using the GRI Standards
The sustainability reporting process begins with the organization identifying the reporting topics that reflect their significant economic, environmental and social impacts. With the Standards, these are the ‘material’ topics to report on.
The Universal Standards support the company in identifying its material topics by laying out important principles when preparing a report. They also contain disclosures on the organization’s specific context, such as its size, activities, governance and stakeholder engagement.
The Sector Standards, when available and applicable to the reporting organization, support companies within sectors to determine their material topics and what to report for each topic. For example, an oil company reporting in accordance with the GRI Standards is required to use the Oil and Gas Sector Standard.
The 33 Topic Standards contain disclosures that organizations use to report their impacts in relation to a topic and how it manages these impacts. For example, a business can use the GRI Standard on water and effluents to report their impacts on the environment because of its water withdrawal from areas facing water stress and how it manages these impacts.
This approach of identifying and reporting on material topics helps companies create reports that focus on the impacts of their activities and operations and meet the information demands of their stakeholders.