Colourful wooden figurines on a flat surface.

The rise of the social pillar: The ‘S’ in ESG

There has been a growing focus on the “social” pillar of environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters. This report examines why these social factors are increasingly important and how CPAs can lead in this space.

The Rise of the Social Pillar: An Introduction to the ‘S’ in ESG is a foundational resource for CPAs that explores the diverse range of social factors impacting organizations and the complexities as organizations are expected to increase transparency and accountability for their social impacts, practices and performance.

Growing demand for action and transparency on social factors

Stakeholders increasingly expect organizations to consider the impact of social matters on their business models, operations and across their value chains. Additionally, regulators and governments across the globe are looking at integrating social matters into policymaking and disclosure rules. The scope of social matters is broad and includes:

  • human rights
  • health and safety
  • employee engagement and satisfaction
  • Indigenous peoples and communities
  • diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • ethics and security

The role for CPAs

CPAs have a critical role to play in facilitating the integration of social factors into an organization’s strategy, in its risk and performance management, and into the reporting and assurance of relevant information.

This report is created for:

  • CPAs working in industry (i.e. operational, management accounting and reporting roles), at not-for-profits and in the public sector
  • CPAs in leadership roles

Read this report to learn more about

  • the 'S' in ESG
  • challenges, opportunities, and the role of the CPA
  • a case for finance: social and human capital accounting
  • current disclosure landscape