Business Contributions to the SDGs – A Student Assessment
This project aims to aggregate corporate ESG data to better understand private sector contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), while educating the next generation of corporate professionals. We do this through creating assignments that engage students in higher education institutions in proactively identifying, aggregating, analysing, and sharing the achievements of companies to the SDGs as reported in their CSR and Communication on Progress reports submitted to the UN Global Compact.
“The need to gather data on SDG impact is clear. With over 8,000 companies of all sizes around the world, and the largest repository of data on corporate implementation of sustainability principles and practices, the UN Global Compact is in a good position to harvest SDG data. We are committed to helping measure private sector contribution to the SDGs for next year’s High Level Political Forum.”
– Lise Kingo, CEO and Executive Director, United Nations Global Compact
Through this research we are able to see what companies are disclosing and what they are not disclosing, as well as develop comparable and open analyses around how they are performing to different SDGs. As a relatively new framework, no one knows exactly how companies should be reporting to the SDGs, so this research allows multi-stakeholder engagement approach to collaboratively develop our understanding and assessments of how companies can and should contribute towards the 2030 targets.
Universities around the globe are participating in the project, with 1300 students at 11 higher education institutions in 9 countries engaged in 2017. Building on the over 20,000 data points on corporate sustainability performance aggregated in 2017, we are aiming to double the amount in 2018, creating further possibilities for analysing and understanding corporations’ performance and disclosure rates.