2010 GRI reporting in US pushes past 2009 numbers

The December trawl for GRI reports proved bountiful. US reporting stats now exceed the 2009 numbers by nearly 10%.

In a previous blog, I noted a sharp increase of GRI-type sustainability reports recorded in GRI’s database for Canada. At the same time, I observed a marginal decline for the US. Today’s tally suggests a different picture. The latest finding (31 Dec 2010) shows 153 GRI reports published in the US in 2010 (2009: 140) and 66 reports in Canada (2009: 40). The reporting trend is presented in this bar chart:

GRI Reporting Stats for Canada and USA since 2001

GRI Reporting Stats for Canada and USA 2010

The number of reports underplays the many brands, tons of GHG emissions and savings, millions of employees and supply chains, and billions of revenues these reports cover. But more on that in a future blog. Similarly, ‘CSR nerds’ (and here I include knowledgeable analysts/investors) recognize the use of key GRI elements in many of the more advanced and credible CSR reports. However, lack of a formal GRI Index currently prevents the listing of those GRI-like reports in GRI’s database. And as others have pointed out, these figures are not exact. Many reporters (and/or their consultants) have not routinely informed GRI about published GRI reports, although there is no cost associated with their listing in GRI’s database.

Also, in the past, GRI relied primarily on a passive data capture process – and most CSR nerds have used www.corporateregister.com for a repository of reports and related reviews, statistics, etc. Today, many GRI Data Partners around the world support GRI in better capturing published reports for a variety of countries/regions. The Data Partners for North America comprise KPMG Canada (Canada) and PRIZMA (Canada, USA).

So what kind of reporting growth should we expect in 2011? I decided to encourage a ‘crowd intelligence’ experiment: I committed a $500 donation to the NGO of choice of the winning prediction for 2011. Please join in and leave your prediction as a comment here

Have a happy, health and prosperous New Year!

Mehrdad Nazari, MBA, MSc, LEAD Fellow - Senior CSR & ESIA Advisor, PRIZMA