The mission of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) Foundation is to establish industry-specific disclosure standards across environmental, social, and governance topics that facilitate communication between companies and investors about financially material, decision-useful information. Such information should be relevant, reliable and comparable across companies on a global basis.
The SASB Foundation envisions an investment universe where a shared understanding of companies’ sustainability performance enables companies and investors to make informed decisions that drive improved sustainability outcomes and thereby lead to improved long-term value creation.
The SASB Foundation has established an independent standard-setting arm, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board, that sets sustainability disclosure standards that are industry-specific and tied to the concept of materiality to investors. The standards are intended to capture sustainability matters that are financially material—reasonably likely to have a material impact on financial performance or condition. Standard-setting is accomplished through a rigorous process that includes evidence-based research and broad, balanced stakeholder participation.
The SASB Foundation also provides education and other resources that advance the use and understanding of our standards.
The SASB Foundation operates in a governance structure similar to the structure adopted by other internationally recognized bodies that set standards for disclosure to investors, including the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). This structure includes a board of directors (“the Foundation Board”) and a standard-setting board (“the Standards Board”). The Standards Board develops, issues, and maintains the SASB standards. The Foundation Board oversees the strategy, finances, and operations of the entire organization, and appoints the members of the Standards Board.
The Foundation Board is not involved in setting standards but is responsible for overseeing the Standards Board’s compliance with the organization’s due process requirements. As set out in the SASB Rules of Procedure, the SASB’s standard-setting activities are transparent and follow careful due process, including extensive consultation with companies, investors, and relevant experts.
The SASB Foundation is funded by a range of sources, including contributions from philanthropies, companies, and individuals, as well as through the sale and licensing of publications, educational materials, and other products. The SASB Foundation receives no government financing and is not affiliated with any governmental body, the FASB, the IASB, or any other financial accounting standard-setting body.
The SASB Foundation has studied the business models of other standard setters to determine best practices for funding standard-setting work while avoiding conflicts. In applying the lessons learned, we have instituted a governance model that separates standard setting from funding considerations. We have also developed a plan for growing annual revenues from diverse sources to ensure our longevity and independence.
SASB’s revenues come from three sources:
- Membership & Earned Income – mission-aligned programs, including education, conferences, tools, and licensing
- Market Support Contributions – annual contributions from market beneficiaries, such as the accounting firms and other market participants
- Philanthropy – gifts from foundations and individuals
Our most recent Annual Report provides greater detail on our funding and finances.