Annual A4S Forum event

2013

HRH The Prince of Wales addresses the A4S Forum 2013

HRH The Prince of Wales addresses the A4S Forum

On 12th December A4S held its Annual Forum on the role of the finance and accounting community in creating resilient business models and a sustainable economy.

The event was attended by 200 guests including Chief Financial Officers and other senior executives from business, investors, the accounting community, government, academia and civil society.

A speech was given by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales:

This was followed by a panel discussion with A4S CFO Leadership Network Co-Chairs, John Rogers (CFO, Sainsbury’s) and Pierre-André Terisse (CFO, Danone) and Network member Rolf-Dieter Schwalb, CFO, Royal DSM, chaired by A4S Executive Chairman, Jessica Fries:

The establishment of the A4S Chief Financial Officer Leadership Network was announced at the Forum event. Learn more about the Network members here and access the press release here.

Click here for a list of the A4S Annual Forum 2013 attendees

Sarah Nolleth, A4S Director

Sarah Nolleth, A4S Director

Chief Financial Officer discussion panel

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2012

On 13th December over 200 international representatives including Chief Financial Officers and other senior executives from business, investors, the accounting community, government, academia and civil society gathered at St James’s Palace State Apartments to hear His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales speak about ‘the role of the finance and accounting community in future-proofing our economy’.

The event focussed on the role of this community in helping organizations prepare for new economic, environmental and social risks and opportunities and the need for organizations to think in a more integrated way by embedding sustainability into their overall strategy and decision making processes.

Speakers included:

Peter Bakker, President, World Business Council for Sustainable Development who noted that, “Too many business models and strategies are dependent on the notion that current economic principles and capitalism are static.  This is naïve.”

Christianna Wood, Former Chairman of the Board of Governors of the International Corporate Governance Network, who shared her belief that, “Long term value creation requires the integration of sustainability into your strategy”; and

Jean-Marc Huët, CFO, Unilever, who emphasized that, “Growth and Sustainability are not in conflict.  In our experience, sustainability drives growth.

Report launch – Future proofed decision making: Integrating environmental and social factors into strategy, finance and operations

At the Forum, A4S launched the report Future proofed decision making: Integrating environmental and social factors into strategy, finance and operations

The report reveals the urgent need to better communicate to senior decision makers the business case for considering the environment and society along side financial issues.  Not only does the business case need to be made, but it needs to be made in the right way and using the right language.

Several organizations are undertaking urgent work to value social and natural capital and the impacts organizations have on these capital stocks. 

The A4S report sheds new light on the context in which this work is taking place, revealing that senior decision makers first need to understand why these issues are relevant to Board level decision making and for the credibility of the data to be proven.

The report summarizes the key barriers and drivers for change and how the A4S Project’s work in 2013 will be shaped by the need to address these concerns, along with steps organizations can begin to take now. Click here for more information on the report.

Prior to the main Forum, a roundtable was held to discuss the establishment of an international CFO leadership network to help CFOs to share experiences and work together to drive change, and the Accounting Bodies Network held their annual meeting to discuss its 2013 workplan and the A4S principles, and presented its plans to HRH The Prince of Wales.

Speeches

Speeches at the Forum were given by

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales

Peter Bakker, President, World Business Council for Sustainable Development 

Christy Wood, Former Chairman of the Board of Governors of the International Corporate Governance Network 

Jean-Marc Huët, Chief Financial Officer, Unilever  

Click here for a list of the 2012 attendees.

Click here for the A4S Accounting Bodies Network (ABN) Annual Review which was launched at the ABN’s annual meeting.

HRH greets speakers Peter Bakker, Christy Wood, Jean-Marc Huët

HRH The Prince of Wales addresses the 2012 Accounting for Sustainability Forum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2011

On Thursday 15th December over 200 representatives from the international accounting and business communities, investors, government, academia and civil society gathered at St James’s Palace State Apartments to hear His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales speak about “the economic invisibility of nature” and consider how the value of the planet’s natural resources, ecosystems and biodiversity can be taken into account, fully and consistently, in economic, accounting and decision-making systems.

Prior to the main meeting, participants assembled in roundtables to discuss the following topics:

“The economic invisibility of nature” exploring how business, investors and governments can accelerate work to account for Natural and Social Capital as part of day-to-day decision-making.

“Towards Integrated Reporting: Communicating Value In The 21st Century” hosted by The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) and the International Integrated Reporting Council, regarding the development of Integrated Reporting and the work of the IIRC.

Speeches at the main meeting were given by:

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales

Jeremy Grantham, Director, The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment; Co-Founder GMO

Jochen Zeitz, CEO Sport and Lifestyle Group, CSO of PPR and Chairman of the Board of PUMA

David McCandless, Author, Designer and Creative Director, Information is Beautiful.

Click here for the 2011 attendees.

HRH meets Jeremy Grantham, Jochen Zeitz and David McCandless

HRH meets Jeremy Grantham, Jochen Zeitz and David McCandless

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales addresses the A4S Forum 2011

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales addresses the A4S Forum 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2010

On Wednesday 15th December 2010, around two hundred representatives from the international business and finance communities, investors, government, academia and civil society and the Accounting Bodies Network gathered in London for the meeting of The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Forum.

The subject of the meeting was how the global economy needs to evolve to meet the challenges of the sustainability revolution – the future is uncertain and people are judged, remunerated and recognised largely by what they achieve today rather than tomorrow; however, how we plan and provide for the future will determine our ultimate success and, indeed, survival. One thing is clear – better and more comprehensive information is a vital pre-requisite, and the Forum considered how this better information can be provided.

Prior to the main meeting, participants assembled in roundtables to discuss the following topics, which are part of A4S’s current workstreams:

Valuing natural capital – the roundtable explored the business case for valuing the natural capital that underpins our global macroeconomic model, and the role of the finance function in embedding this in business models, strategies and decision-making.

Capital expenditure appraisal – the roundtable discussed the current practices and issues of integrating sustainability considerations into capital expenditure decision-making.

Integrated reporting – the roundtable discussion considered the development of a global system for accounting for sustainability and the part the IIRC can play in this work.

The roundtables were followed by the premier of our new film, speeches and a business panel.

Click here to view our new film, Business Leader or Eco-Warrior Video Icon starring Theo Paphitis, Deborah Meaden, Sir Richard Branson, Justin King, Sir Stuart Rose, Indra Nooyi and Stephen Fry. Click here for the Business leader or Eco-Warrior transcript.

Speeches were given by:

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales
Click here to read a transcript of this speech

The Rt Hon George Osborne MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer
Click here to read a transcript of this speech
Watch a video of the Chancellor’s speech on the A4S YouTube channel

The panel discussion was chaired by Stephanie Flanders, with Justin King, (CEO, Sainsbury’s), Jonathon Porritt, (Forum for the Future), and Min Zhu (Special Advisor to Managing Director of the IMF).

Click here to view a list of participants at the A4S Forum event 2010

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales

 

The Chancellor of the Exchequor

The Chancellor of the Exchequor

The panel discussion with Stephanie Flanders, Justin King, Jonathon Porritt, and Min Zhu

The panel discussion with Stephanie Flanders, Justin King, Jonathon Porritt, and Min Zhu

 

His Royal Highness meets Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden

His Royal Highness meets Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden

 

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2009

On Thursday 17th December 2009, around two hundred representatives from the corporate sector, the investment community, the Forum’s Accounting Bodies Network, the public sector and academia gathered in London for the A4S Forum meeting. The subject of the meeting was the role of the finance and accounting community in coming forward with an international financial reporting framework to provide integrated, concise, clear and comparable financial and non-financial information about organisations’ sustainability performance.

Speeches were given by:

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales
Click here to read a transcript of this speech

Professor Tim Jackson, Professor of Sustainable Development, University of Surrey, on the macro-economic conditions required to achieve a sustainable economy and the implications for accounting and reporting.
Click here to read a transcript of this speech (140KB)

Lord Colin Sharman, Chairman, Aviva plc on the response required by investors, CFOs and boards to integrate sustainability considerations into strategic planning and reporting, and the benefits of connected reporting.
Click here to read a transcript of this speech (96KB)

Professor Mervyn King, Chairman, King Committee on Corporate Governance and Chairman, Global Reporting Initiative on the urgent need to establish a connected and integrated reporting framework and the required regulatory and governance response.
Click here to read a transcript of this speech (84KB)

Click here to view a list of participants. (112KB)

REPORTS LAUNCHED ON THE DAY

Governance & Collaboration – Establishing an “International Integrated Reporting Committee” (107 KB)

Connected Reporting – A practical guide with worked examples (263 KB). Click here to read more about Connected Reporting

Practical Insights – A summary of case studies in embedding and reporting sustainability (117 KB)

 

Professor Tim Jackson

Professor Tim Jackson

 

Lord Colin Sharman

Lord Colin Sharman

Professor Mervyn King

Professor Mervyn King

 

His Royal Highness with the speakers

His Royal Highness with the speakers

 

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2008

On Wednesday 17th December 2008, more than two hundred representatives from the corporate sector, the investment community, the Forum’s Accounting Bodies Network, the public sector, academia and NGOs gathered in London to discuss Accounting for sustainability: decision-making and reporting in a resource constrained world.

Opening speeches were given by:

  • His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales (click here to read the transcript of the speech)
  • Tony Hayward, Group Chief Executive, BP
  • Stephen Green, Group Chairman, HSBC Holdings plc
  • David Blood, Senior Partner, Generation Investment Management

Click here to go to the Media Centre to listen to or download recordings of these speeches.
Click here to view a list of participants. (169KB)

Following the speeches, participants assembled in groups to help identify concrete steps towards better accounting for sustainability. This involved discussion of, among other areas:

  • current developments in connected reporting
  • carbon reporting and decision making
  • valuing sustainability impacts
  • embedding sustainability within strategy and risk

Proceedings from the day will be published in a report outlining responses to key sustainability challenges, potential solutions to identified barriers and responsibilities for action.

Pre-reading booklet:

  • Click here to view/download(135KB).

Additional documents available to view / download:

Group 1: Connected reporting – a mechanism for change

Group 2: Carbon – sustainability reporting standards and information gaps

Group 3: Placing a value on sustainability

Group 4: Strategy and risk

  • Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) presentation summary (18KB)
  • CICA paper – Sustainability, Risk and Opportunity: A Holistic Approach (783KB)
  • Extract from BT’s sustainability report (124KB)