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IIRC launches new <IR> Network group to drive integrated thinking

Posted 11 June, 2018

The International Integrated Reporting Council launches the Integrated Thinking & Strategy special interest group on 12 June 2018 at an event held in London. The group, a subset of the international <IR> Network, offers world-renowned and innovative organisations the opportunity to share thinking about developing strategy across multiple capitals, learn from world leaders and co-create a common world view of integrated thinking that is globally relevant to help build resilient, future-fit businesses.

The group is collecting case studies and examples of current thinking and practice in the area of integrated thinking. Together, we will co-creatively craft what we understand best practice to look like, and we will identify adoption pathways that help organisations employ integrated thinking in their own work.

The IIRC has invited a number of partners to join a leadership group to drive this work forward, reflecting the need for multiple disciplines to be involved in the development of integrated thinking, which is still developing as a nascent discipline. The partners are:

  • Association of International Certified Professional Accountants
  • Natural Capital Coalition
  • Said Business School, University of Oxford
  • The Princes’ Accounting for Sustainability
  • The World Bank

Christian Heller, who leads BASF’s impact measurement and valuation program, is the group’s co-chair alongside the IIRC’s Jyoti Banerjee.

Why is the IIRC starting this group?

Traditional business management, based on financial analysis, has not kept pace with the seismic shifts taking place over the last thirty years. The value of intangible assets has now grown to over 80% of total market value for S&P 500 companies. Today, the best performers are basing their business decisions on interconnected and forward-looking information across multiple capitals, with a view to sustainable value creation.

In 2016, Larry Fink, chairman of BlackRock, wrote to CEOs of leading companies asking them to communicate to shareholders their annual strategic frameworks for long-term value creation.  The 2018 edition of Larry Fink’s letter also challenged CEOs to consider their social purpose. Many others, from Paul Polman to Jamie Dimon, have joined the chorus around considering the longer term, as well as the short and medium term.

A number of questions arise:

  • What are the strategic imperatives behind longer-term value creation across the range of capitals that businesses rely on (from financial and manufactured capital to human, intellectual, social, relational and natural capital)?
  • What multi capital decision tools can businesses use that are credible in the board room? With your investors?
  • How are companies dealing strategically with these and other challenges of corporate governance and performance management?

How to get involved

This invitation-only network features leading organisations, from any global sector or region, that want to develop relationships with other businesses innovating in the evolution of integrated thinking and strategy. Some participants have already adopted integrated reporting and are seeking to take further their integrated thinking, as they increasingly understand its essential role.  Others recognise the need to manage the multiple capitals they deploy in their businesses, even if they are not adopting integrated reporting.  Individual participants in the group are likely to come from a number of different parts of the organisation:

  • Finance management and performance management
  • Strategy development
  • Sustainability
  • Human capital

To express your interest in joining this group, and to find out more, please contact Jyoti Banerjee or Brigitte Raffegeau on: [email protected]