Accounting and finance professionals are at the forefront of the transition to a sustainable future, according to new research from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).
Finance professionals from around the world have shared their views resulting in a new report, Accounting for Societal Values.
Organizations need to transition to a sustainable future that encompasses economic, environmental and social aspects. Society faces long-term challenges posed by social injustice, and stakeholders and regulators are increasingly concerned about the social impact of organizational behavior.
Give back to society
This is why defining and measuring the social return of an organization’s activities becomes as important as the financial goals themselves.
The accounting and finance profession needs to see this as an opportunity to define its future role and place the social agenda at the heart of the profession.
Three key messages from this report:
*The future of the industry includes sustainable development through social equity and protection of the environment.
* Measuring social agendas is difficult, but we must act.
*Companies now urgently need to incorporate this agenda into their strategies.
Helen Brand OBE, Chief Executive of ACCA, commented: “The social agenda is a broad one that calls for immediate action by organizations. Without valuable and active input from the accounting and finance professions, all organizations cannot achieve their goals of sustainable development will not happen. The industry has an opportunity to play its full part in bringing about a just transition, especially in society – which it cannot avoid.”
Fazeela Gopalani, head of ACCA Middle East, said: “While the focus of many organizations may have been on the environmental aspects of a just transition, it is also important to ensure that no one is left behind. The social agenda is central to transformation component, and while it may present challenges in measuring progress, this does not excuse a lack of action. If we are to be a just society, accounting and finance professionals need to be at the forefront of ensuring their organizations measure and report performance in the field.” trade arab news agency