Rate the Raters and "The Race to Decide Who's Greenest"

01 Dec 2011 – SA in the News

Bloomberg publishes this week about the growing frustration of investors, companies and other stakeholders with the proliferation and varying quality of sustainability ratings. The article cites SustainAbility’s Rate the Raters research and quotes SustainAbility Vice President Michael Sadowski, who led the research effort, as well as several others who were advisers to SustainAbility on Rate the Raters project.

From the article:

Some corporations grouse that the raters can lack transparency, though few want to say so on the record. About a quarter of the ranking groups disclose no information on their methods and a majority offer only partial disclosures, according to “Rate the Raters,” a report SustainAbility released last year. When companies feel that groups seeking to rank them on how much information they disclose aren’t transparent themselves, “that drives them crazy,” says Michael Sadowski, a vice-president at SustainAbility. Lynn Brown, a vice-president at trash-hauling giant Waste Management, says raters understandably want to compare companies with their peers. But she says she finds it “perplexing” that in one ranking her company is paired with a chemical manufacturer and in another it’s listed with Weight Watchers as a “professional services” company.

Read the full article at bloomberg.com.

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