Social Impact Day 2020


Session1: “SDG Impact: Global Trends and Japan’s Role in Achieving the SDGs” (Summary)

・Ken Shibusawa, Founder, Shibusawa and Company, Inc. , Chairman, Commons Asset Management / Member, Governing Council, Social Impact Management Initiative

・Katsuji Imata, President, Social Impact Management Initiative / Co-CEO, Blue Mable Japan, Inc.

Session one focused on Global Trends and Japan’s Role in Achieving the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). “SDG Impact”, an assurance system for the SDGs being developed by UNDP, provides means and tools for investors and companies to contribute to the Goals, in order to realize a world where all funds are used to achieve the Goals. Specifically, the creation of standards for investment and business tailored to private equity, debt, and enterprise, as well as an assurance system is under formation. These are expected to be finalized by the end of 2021.

The “SDG Impact Standards” will not be a rule-based checklist, but principle-based guidelines that facilitate best practices. One of the central points is to question how business integrate the implementation of the SDGs in core business practices, making the commitment of top management essential for answering this question.

It is recommended that investors and businesses start by incorporating the four components of SDG Impact into their integrated reports. By working on SDG Impact and clearly expressing their non-financial environmental and social impacts, investors and businesses are expected to learn not only the “how” of gaining assurance, but also the “why” of being valued by capital markets and society. Similarly, for social purpose organizations, speaking to their donors and grantmakers about the achievement of social and environmental goals should facilitate funding that is more impact based. In doing so, it is important to not focus on perfection, but to regularly and systematically incorporate a measurement perspective where possible.

The SDG Impact provides a good opportunity for Japanese stakeholders to strengthen their contribution to the SDGs, and principle-based standards such as the SDG Impact are expected to lead to enhanced corporate value in the long run.