Carrots and Sticks: New Instruments to further Sustainability Reporting


This report assesses developments in sustainability reporting regulation and policy across 71 countries and identifies a worldwide surge in the number of reporting instruments in place. The report is the fourth in the series since 2006 and is produced jointly by KPMG International, GRI, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and The Centre for Corporate Governance in Africa (at the University of Stellenbosch Business School).

The 2016 edition of the Carrots & Sticks report is the fourth in the series and marks the ten year anniversary of the project. Carrots & Sticks was first published in 2006 to provide an overview of trends in standards for sustainability reporting. The 2016 edition identifies almost 400 sustainability regulations, guidelines, codes-of-conduct, frameworks and other reporting instruments – both mandatory and voluntary – across 64 countries. The previous research in 2013 identified 180 instruments across 44 countries.

carrots and sticksThe report finds that government regulation accounts for the largest proportion of sustainability reporting instruments worldwide and that mandatory instruments dominate, accounting for around two thirds of the instruments identified. The research also reveals a high level of activity from stock exchanges and financial market regulators in issuing non-financial reporting guidelines and other instruments.

KPMG and the other project partners have launched a searchable online database that provides details of all the reporting instruments identified during the research.

The year 2016 now calls for translating these achievements into action to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It also marks the tenth anniversary since the first Carrots & Sticks report was published in 2006. (The second report was published in 20104 and the third in 2013).

Carrots and Sticks report

To learn more about the report please visit KPMG’s website