SASB Standards connect business and investors on the financial impacts of sustainability.
An Introduction to SASB Standards
SASB Standards guide the disclosure of financially material sustainability information by companies to their investors. Available for 77 industries, the Standards identify the subset of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues most relevant to financial performance in each industry.
SASB Standards are maintained under the auspices of the Value Reporting Foundation, a global nonprofit organization that offers a comprehensive suite of resources designed to help businesses and investors develop a shared understanding of enterprise value—how it is created, preserved, or eroded. The resources—including Integrated Thinking Principles, the Integrated Reporting Framework, and SASB Standards—can be used alone or in combination, depending on business needs.
The Value Reporting Foundation Board of Directors oversees the strategy, finances, and operations of the entire organization, and appoints the members of the SASB Standards Board. The SASB Standards Board is an independent board that is accountable for the due process, outcomes, and ratification of the SASB Standards. Learn more about our governance structure here.
What’s unique about SASB Standards?
For decades, financial accounting standards have provided a common language for companies and investors to talk about financial performance. However, traditional accounting was developed in a world where tangible assets comprised most of the market valuation of companies.
In today’s economy, sustainability issues are global business issues that impact the financial condition, operating performance, and enterprise value of companies. Data security—a social issue—is important to companies in the software industry. Water management—an environmental issue—is essential to a beverage producer. Managing conflicts of interest—a governance issue—is critical for an investment bank. Effectively managing these issues over the long-term is likely to improve business performance in the form of reduced operating costs, enhanced reputation, greater resilience to risks, the potential for competitive advantage, and drive long-term enterprise value.
SASB was founded as a nonprofit organization in 2011 to help businesses and investors develop a common language about the financial impacts of sustainability. prospects. Over the years, the corporate sustainability disclosure landscape has become very complex. Many global businesses and investors have been calling for simplification and clarity in this landscape. In response, in November 2020 the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) announced their intention to merge into the Value Reporting Foundation, which was officially formed in June 2021. By integrating two entities that are focused on enterprise value creation, the merger signaled significant progress towards simplification. The Value Reporting Foundation offers a comprehensive suite of resources—including Integrated Thinking Principles, the Integrated Reporting Framework, and SASB Standards— designed to help businesses and investors develop a shared understanding of enterprise value. To learn more about the Value Reporting Foundation, click here.