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Carol Adams with two human hands holding earth global and big city on blurred nature backdrop

Professor Carol Adams has been appointed as Chair of the Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB), the independent body that sets the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards.

Professor Carol Adams, international authority in corporate and public sector reporting, is set to lead the Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB), the independent body that sets the GRI Standards, as their next GSSB Chair.  

Judy Kuszewski, who has served as GSSB Chair since 2017, completes her second and final term at the end of March, with Carol starting on 1 April 2023. The GSSB has an increasingly significant role, at a time when global attention on an organization’s impacts on sustainable development and mandatory accountability requirements are higher than ever before.    

Internationally renowned for her research in sustainability accounting and reporting, its role in driving change and its implications for practice and policy, Professor Adams also advises the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy on sustainability reporting, and is a member of the Australian Accounting Standards Board’s Sustainability Reporting Advisory Panel. She is also a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland and chairs their Sustainability Panel.  

Professor Adams recently advised the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in creating Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Impact Standards, and the UK Government’s Implementation Taskforce on Impact Investing. A past chair (2017-19) of the GRI Stakeholder Council, she has for many years been an active contributor to GRI’s mission.  

Commenting on her recent appointment, Professor Carol Adams said: 

“With a growing recognition of the importance of sustainability reporting, GRI has a huge part to play. I am looking forward to working closely with the GSSB’s expert members, to further widen usage of GRI’s multi-stakeholder standards, which are the global blueprint for quality and comprehensive impact reporting. 

"Identifying and measuring impacts on the economy, environment and society is an essential step in managing an organization’s risks and opportunities, as well as assessing positive and negative impacts on achieving the SDGs. Beyond that, accountability for management approach, strategy, governance oversight and impacts through use of the GRI Standards is critical in driving change, ensuring sustainable development is not side-lined by a narrow focus on financial considerations.” 

Eelco van der Enden, CEO of GRI, added: 

“I am delighted that Carol has accepted the position of GSSB Chair, which is a crucially important role in ensuring the effective governance of the GRI Standards. I am confident that under her direction the GSSB’s influential position in the reporting landscape, including engagement with European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) and the ISSB, will continue to increase.”  

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