ISEAL Members’ Week: Linking data to performance measurement and claims
Last week ASI attended ISEAL Members’ Week 2023 in Amsterdam, to share insights with voluntary initiatives operating across a range of sectors.
26 September 2023
ASI is an ISEAL Code compliant member of ISEAL – a global membership organisation providing a framework for effective, credible sustainability systems. Last week ASI attended ISEAL Members’ Week 2023 in Amsterdam, to share insights with voluntary initiatives operating across a range of sectors.
During the week’s sessions, ISEAL Community Members explored how to respond to current challenges affecting sustainability standards. Key themes of interest to ASI included:
- changing regulatory requirements and their impact on sustainability systems,
- innovative new approaches to common challenges,
- best practice in data management, stakeholder consultation, and making claims.
Stakeholders’ interest in performance data is increasing. One of the sessions discussed the ongoing evolution of standard schemes regarding data collection and transition towards performance measurement of its Certified Entities over time. It highlighted the importance of defining a framework to measure and improve the results from voluntary standards, with a focus on delivering the desired impacts. The session emphasized defining the purpose of data collection, the target audience, and looking beyond scheme-level performance to sector-level performance measurement.
As ASI matures over the years, so does the depth of insights and outcomes we share. We began by sharing basic data such as the number of Certified Entities, countries where Certified companies operate (Outcomes Dashboard) to sharing progress on Non-Conformance data (Public Dashboard) and conducting focused studies on environmental or social topics (Outcome and Impact Evaluations). At the sector-level we collect ASI Chain of Custody Material Flows along the aluminium value chain and publish it in the context of global aluminium supply and demand (Chain of Custody Material Flows).
Communicating long-term outcomes and impacts still presents challenges. ASI must collect multi-year data, establish baseline metrics, and assess our tangible impact on driving change within the aluminium sector. We are actively working on addressing these challenges by rebuilding our data platform and working towards including more outcomes-based criteria through the next major standards revision. The aim would be to include more additional performance indicators related to ESG (similar to one under ASI PS V3, criterion 5.3 which defines an emissions intensity threshold for aluminium smelters).
During ISEAL Members’ Week, another session of interest explored the changes in sustainability claims due to evolving regulations and corporate reporting. The upcoming EU Green Claims Directive and Empowering Consumer Directive are driving this shift. Currently, sustainability claims are mostly limited to outlining how standards are met and the actions taken. However, there is growing interest in communicating specific topics and performance outcomes, such as GHG emissions. ASI Certified Entities can currently make claims about the work and systems they’ve implemented to meet the 11 Principles within the ASI Performance Standards. As noted above, ASI intends to align with the shift towards performance outcomes and impact claims, where data plays a crucial role. These claims will cover progress made by Entities towards achieving issue-based performance claims.
ASI is updating its Claims Guide in 2024 and is seeking input from all stakeholders on performance and issue-based claims. Email us at email@example.com to share your suggestions.
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