Reimagining capitalism is an imperative. We need to create a more inclusive and sustainable form of capitalism that works for every person and the planet. Massive environmental damage, growing income and wealth disparity, stress, and depression within developed economies amid a substantial economic boom are examples of how our current system of creating and distributing value is broken. We need to be able to factor into our decision-making the consequences of our actions not only for financial and physical capital but also for human, social and natural capital.
In order to provide actionable signals for business leaders, these impacts must be connected to accounting statements. Just as the development of the financial accounting infrastructure has been a necessary condition for the development of large-scale capital markets, the development of impact-weighted financial accounts (“impact-weighted accounts”) is a necessary condition for the development of capital markets driven by sustainability considerations.
What are impact-weighted accounts? Impact-weighted accounts are line items on a financial statement, such as an income statement or a balance sheet, which are added to supplement the statement of financial health and performance by reflecting a company’s positive and negative impacts on employees, customers, the environment and the broader society. The aspiration is an integrated view of performance which allows investors and managers to make informed decisions based not only on monetized private gains or losses, but also on the broader impact a company has on society and the environment.
Please join ASBC as we host a webinar on Revolutionizing Accounting with George Serafeim, Faculty Chair of the Impact-Weighted Accounts Project and the Charles M. Williams Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, to discuss this important topic. The webinar will take place October 8th at 1PM ET. Please register here to attend this important discuss