Sustainability Insights 2017-12-08T10:45:57+00:00


These are articles written by our Trialogue colleagues, associates and guest writers giving insight into issues that impact on business and society. Tips on effectively managing sustainability in your business, the latest annual corporate reporting trends, the role of the Social and Ethics Committee, curated articles, and more…

First quarterly Sustainability Review of 2012 – a supplement to the Financial Mail

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Our first issue of 2012 looks both backwards and forwards to interrogate some of the drivers of sustainable behaviour that South African businesses are responding to. Coinciding with the reporting season, February is a good time to look back on challenges and achievements and to consider strategic objectives for the [...]

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

While the basic principles of reporting should be relatively straightforward, indeed universally applicable, the GRI has contrived an unnecessarily complicated set of guidelines, principles, boundaries, etc. Unfortunately, many reporters skip the guidelines and simply apply the GRI (G3) performance indicator table, using it to write reams of text on issues [...]

King III and integrated reporting

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

The Institute of Directors in Southern Africa (IoD) formally introduced the King Code of Governance Principles and the King Report on Governance (King III) in 2009. The Code and Report fall in line with the Companies Act no 71 of 2008, and became effective from July 2010. King III recommends [...]

AA1000 assurance standard

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Considering the recommendation by King III for the integrated report to be externally assured (in the same way that the Consolidated Financial Statements are externally audited) it makes sense to understand how your report is likely to be judged for its quality before embarking on its compilation. AA1000 is the [...]

News round up: Quarterly sustainability highlights from 2012

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Each quarter Trialogue produces the Sustainability Review as a supplement in the Financial Mail magazine. As part of the publication, we look back at the previous quarter and reflect on the main news items relevant to business. This we call the ‘Quarterly Review’. Download the quarterly review for November 2012 [...]

Process – how to define issues, write the detail, summarise for the IAR

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Start by defining your material issues Start by figuring out the most material issues affecting the long-term sustainability of your organisation. These should be both financial and non-financial issues. Use the GRI’s six areas to help think about possible issues relating to corporate responsibility. For the financial side, your management [...]

A basic approach to structuring the integrated annual report

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

The first point to note is that the current discussion around the integrated annual report suggests a document of no more than 40 – 50 pages. This requires that you approach the report with a fresh view. What is the overall message you want to convey to your stakeholders? What [...]

Slaying the annual report monster

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Over the years, annual reports have grown in their size and complexity as organisations have added in more and more subsections in an effort to comply with increasing legislation. The main problem is that these various items are farmed out to different departments of the organisation. Some are written with [...]

How to report on an issue

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Through its standard disclosures and performance indicators, the GRI provides guidance on how to report on issues. The lay-person’s guide that follows is really no more than common sense developed over a decade or so of reporting for a variety of largely commercial organisations. Background, context, significant events, risk assessment [...]

Discussions on reporting following King III

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Since King III was introduced in 2009, companies and reporting consultancies have been trying to figure out how to change the annual report into an integrated annual report. As King III itself does not offer explicit guidance on the subject, an Integrated reporting Committee (IRC) was established (affiliated to its [...]

The non-financial issues

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

We are entering the season of results presentations. CEOs and their investor relations teams are polishing their PowerPoint slides and preparing for interviews with the analysts. Mostly it’s about financial performance and answering questions such as how the company intends employing its ‘lazy’ balance sheet to provide returns for the [...]

The role of business leadership in society

By | March 12th, 2013|Categories: Sustainability|

Journalists love exposing controversy. For years government has provided plenty of material for stories on ineffective leadership and corruption. Increasingly, however, journalists are honing in on corporate leadership. Media coverage is increasingly focusing its commentary and criticism on corporate leaders, calling them to account for the performance of their organisations, [...]