The role of data in sustainable investment, policy and regulation

The move towards sustainability is accelerating even as the global economy grapples with the consequences of Covid-19, an OMFIF-Refinitiv report shows

  • Climate issues highlight technical gaps in the practical usage of non-financial data
  • Granular tracking through technology has improved, but regulators and investors struggle to determine precise attribution e.g. via Scope 3 emissions along global value chains
  • New data demands in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic; regulatory and industry emphasis has rebalanced away from principally environmental issues to a more holistic focus across the three ESG pillars

Socioeconomic resilience in the face of risks such as the pandemic and climate change is moving to the forefront of agendas across the financial sector. Stakeholders are unanimous in the belief that clear and consistent environmental, social and governance data will be critical to realign the financial markets towards sustainable development and help achieve the sustainable development goals. While there has been significant progress in disclosure of information in relation to environmental and societal impacts over the past decade, this field is still young with unrealised potential.

Complementary advances in data capture, sharing and storage technologies, as well as in data analytics, are paving the way for understanding and extracting information for decision-making on non-financial issues. Central banks, supervisors and private firms are engaging in deeper levels of collaboration to develop common disclosure standards and governance frameworks for non-financial data via platforms such as the Central Banks and Supervisors Network for Greening the Financial System.

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