background image

Research: Boards still have an ESG expertise gap — but they’re improving

author image

By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Harvard Business Review or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: A recent study reveals U.S. public boards have made notable progress in ESG (environmental, social, and governance) expertise over the past five years, although significant gaps remain
• In 2018, only 29% of Fortune 100 board members had ESG credentials; by 2023, this number increased to 43%
• Despite this improvement, expertise in critical areas like climate and worker welfare still lags behind other domains

🔭 The context: Five years ago, the NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business highlighted a critical deficiency in U.S. public boards regarding ESG issues
• With evolving global regulations and rising legal challenges around ESG failures, the need for expertise has grown
• Recent data suggests boards are responding, albeit unevenly, with marked improvements in environmental and governance credentials but modest gains in social credentials

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Board expertise in ESG issues is crucial for navigating the sustainability challenges and opportunities companies face today
• Effective ESG governance can lead to better sustainability outcomes, influencing everything from climate impact to social justice and corporate accountability

⏭️ What's next: Companies are expected to continue enhancing their board compositions with ESG skills to meet regulatory requirements and societal expectations
• The trend towards establishing specialized ESG committees within boards suggests a structural shift towards integrated sustainability governance

💬 One quote: "Knowing the right questions to ask management on material ESG issues has become an important part of a board’s role," said Tensie Whelan, NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business

📈 One stat: In 2023, 43% of Fortune 100 board members now possess ESG credentials, up from 29% in 2018

Click for more news covering the latest on corporate governance

Did you enjoy this illuminem voice? Support us by sharing this article!
author photo

About the author

illuminem's editorial team - providing you with concise summaries of the most important sustainability news of the day.

Follow us on Linkedin, Twitter​ & Instagram

Other illuminem Voices

Related Posts

You cannot miss it!

Weekly. Free. Your Top 10 Sustainability & Energy Posts.

You can unsubscribe at any time (read our privacy policy)