"Current forms of [measurement and] reporting can verge on
the meaningless as they are both too simple and devoid of context."

Rob Gray and Markus Milne, 2004





“Social Footprint introduces
simple elegance...”

Bill Baue, socialfunds.com




Photo of Denali Peak taken on site by Liza McElroy - Website Design and Logo Designs by Svend Design

What is Context-Based Sustainability?

If you're new to Context-Based Sustainability (CBS) or are just a little rusty on the subject, take a look at this short new primer we just put out: The Essence of CBS.

Lockheed Martin Deploys Context-Based Metric

In its recently published 2014 Sustainability Report, Lockheed Martin used CSO’s Context-Based Carbon Metric to measure and report its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.  The results, which include side-by-side comparisons of performance with three other aerospace and defense companies, are disclosed on p. 69 of the report, and clearly show how all four companies’ GHG emissions more than comply with science-based targets for mitigating climate change.  The metric used by Lockheed Martin is freely downloadable from our website here.

Multicapitalism and Integrated Reporting

If ever there was an auspicious moment in performance measurement and reporting, this is surely it. Multicapitalism has arrived! Listen to how author Jane Gleeson-White puts it in her terrific new book, Six Capitals, or Can Accountants Save the Planet? (click here) …

CSO work inspires MultiCapital Scorecard™

CSO is pleased to announce an application of its R&D in context-based sustainability to the development of the world’s first context-based integrated measurement, management and reporting method, the MultiCapital Scorecard™ (MCS). The MCS, which is grounded in an economic doctrine known as Multicapitalism, was jointly developed by CSO’s Executive Director, Mark McElroy, and a colleague of his in the UK, Martin Thomas.

World’s first science-based ranking completed!

CSO and Climate Counts are pleased to announce the results of their joint study in which CSO’s context-based carbon metric was used to assess the GHG emissions of 100 global companies relative to science-based goals. The dramatic results show that decoupling growth from environmental impacts is not only possible, but also a key strategy for driving positive sustainability performance. See here for the results, and here for a press release.

Groundbreaking study compares metrics

In a recent study, we compared one company’s greenhouse gas emissions over a 6-year period using conventional (absolute and relative) metrics on the one hand, and context-based metrics on the other. Amongst our findings was that conventional metrics very often send precisely the wrong signals when it comes to understanding the true sustainability performance of a company. Context-based metrics are much more reliable.

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Are you using context-based metrics yet?

If you’re not using context-based metrics (CBMs) in your organization’s sustainability program, you’re not measuring sustainability performance, per se. Instead, you might be measuring eco-efficiency, citizenship, philanthropy or what have you, but not sustainability performance. In order to measure sustainability performance, impacts must be measured against norms, standards or thresholds that are context-based. Let us show you how!

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Downloadable context-based metrics

Companies interested in experiencing the use of context-based metrics in their sustainability programs will be pleased to know that we now make certain of our metrics freely downloadable. For starters, templates for our context-based carbon and solid waste metrics are now downloadable from this site.

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CSO co-signs public comment to GRI

We (CSO) are proud to have joined dozens of others as a signatory to an important public comment submitted to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) in September 2012 as part of its G4 development process, in which GRI was urged in the strongest possible terms to improve its treatment of the Sustainability Context principle in the next version of its Guidelines (G4).

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