New reports warns over voluntary disclosures


A report, by the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights:  Putting the ‘S’ in ESG: Measuring Human Rights Performance for Investors, co-authored by Casey O’Connor and Sarah Labowitz, examines 12 leading frameworks for assessing companies’ social practices and impacts.

It finds that current measurement is overly deferential to companies to voluntary disclose the efforts they undertake on a wide range of poorly defined “social” activities, rather than measuring their real-world effects.

Casey O’Connor, Sani Fellow at the Center for Business and Human Rights states: “many investors remain on the fence about when and how to incorporate these factors into their analysis.

Overcoming this skepticism and confusion will require better data that help investors identify which companies are social leaders and why these companies make for better long-term investments.”

With this in mind, the report not only outlines several principles for improving companies’ social measurement but it also lays out a series of recommended next steps for key stakeholders including companies them