The Data Quality Gap on Sustainability

Together with Robert Eccles, Alison Taylor, and Salesforce, GlobeScan recently interviewed senior professionals across finance, technology, and sustainability functions to identify four major gaps that stand in the way of sustainability creating value for corporate strategy.

Limited access to quality data is one of these gaps. Our research shows that 95 percent of leaders consider access to high-quality data on sustainability performance to be important for unlocking the full value of sustainability (80% believe it is “very important” and 15% “fairly important”). However, access to high-quality data is a challenge, and fewer than three in ten (27%) say they currently have high-quality sustainability data at their disposal. Our findings also show that those with better access to high-quality data are more likely to value sustainability than those who have limited access.


Although the drive for data is accelerated by the increasing regulatory and reporting pressures from sources such as the ISSB and CSRD, sustainability data should not be collected and managed simply for the sake of compliance and reporting. Neither collecting the data nor reporting on it guarantees that sustainability will drive value. Data collection without action perpetuates a false impression that senior teams are focusing on sustainability when they are not. Instead, teams need sufficient resources and upskilling on how to feed sustainability data into the overall business strategy and integrate it into all parts of management so that it drives capital allocation decisions. Quality data must be used as a tool for guiding, challenging, and validating strategic decisions, not just for reporting and compliance.

Find out more about how to place sustainability at the core of strategy in our new report Sustainable Value Creation: Closing the Gap between Stated Commitments and Operational Realities

Survey Questions: Q13. How important is it to have high-quality sustainability data to deliver value for your organization? Q14. How would you rate the quality of sustainability data you currently have access to?

Source: GlobeScan/Salesforce Value of Sustainability Project, a survey of 234 senior professionals in finance, technology, and sustainability functions