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International governmental co-operation on sustainability reporting: Post Rio+20

The Group of Friends of Paragraph 47 (GoF 47) was formed by the governments of Brazil, Denmark, France and South Africa in June last year following the acknowledgement of the importance of corporate sustainability reporting in Paragraph 47 of the outcome document of the 2012 United Nations (UN) Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20). Since the formation of the group, a number of governments have joined the GoF 47.

The Group aims to advance the promotion of corporate sustainability reporting by:

  • Developing and exchanging best practice models for policy and guidance in this area, building on existing and widely used sustainability reporting frameworks;
  • Inviting governments from other nations to join them in expanding on the ideas and experiences contributing to their core work and providing a channel for relevant engagement;
  • Engaging with relevant stakeholders to incorporate input relating to reporting standards, tools, research, and capacity building for transfer of knowledge and information to developing countries;
  • Serving as a coordinating point for the collection of information on relevant policy and regulation through general research, the use of surveys and reaching out to a steadily growing network;
  • Commissioning technical publications to explore possible gaps in knowledge that need to be addressed; and Leading by example by continuing to improve policy and regulation on corporate sustainability reporting within the Group Members’ own countries.

The group is supported by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) in a Secretariat capacity, and its founding member governments are all pioneers in sustainability reporting practice and policy.

For further information on the Group of Friends of Paragraph 47, including all relevant documents