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Simon Matzinger 320332

Measure What Matters

Politicians and investors all too often think only in terms of profit and GDP - but these narrow metrics don't account for ecological damage, social inequality, or long-term sustainability. In order to build the green economies of tomorrow, we need new tools to measure success


Governments and businesses have used profit and GDP growth as the sole measure of success for too long. Such narrow visions of ‘progress’ have contributed to pushing our environment to its limits and increasing the gap between the richest and the poorest.

In 2015 all governments agreed on a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Goals are applicable to all countries, rich and poor, and recognise the two-way relationship between flourishing natural systems and healthy communities. If these Goals can become applicable at a corporate and national level, they provide a new benchmark measuring progress.


Measure What Matters is an ongoing global initiative to support better alignment between corporate, national and global actors on their measurements of success.

Over the last decade there has been a huge proliferation of sustainability indexes and frameworks. Most of these have been developed in isolation from each other and for different purposes. Meausure What Matters focuses on finding the linkages between different reporting frameworks the the corporate, national and global levels. The project convenes national statistical bodies, accountants, business, civil society organisations, researchers and international organisations to explore the relevance and applicability of the SDGs at different levels of operation.

Join the debate at Measure What Matters.


The project convenes an international Advisory Board of experts from different disciplines who are exploring how to integrate the SDGs into their strategies and operations.

Building on a series of workshops and consultations with business, statisticians, civil society and policy makers, the Global Goals that Work has collected a series of examples, case studies and practical guidance for decision makers on how to integrate the SDGs into their operations.

The project has conducted new research on specific issues, including water, biodiversity, and jobs to identify how measurement systems can be aligned.

Measure What Matters generates debate between diverse groups to understand the challenges and the opportunities for aligning their work with the SDGs.


  • The Green Economy Coalition (GEC): The world’s largest alliance of business, NGO, UN and research organisations committed to the transition to a green economy. Established in 2009, the GEC has built a global network of members, developed a common framework for a green economy, and lobbied for public and private sector policy change.
  • The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S): Established by the Prince of Wales, A4S brings together stakeholders to rethink the fundamentals of accounting and develop the institutions, systems and tools needed to build a sustainable economy.
  • The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI): A leading organisation in the sustainability field. GRI promotes the use of sustainability reporting as a way for organizations to become more sustainable and contribute to sustainable development.
  • The International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED): One of the world’s most influential international development and environment policy research organisations. IIED builds bridges between policy and practice, rich and poor communities, the government and private sector, and across diverse interest groups.
  • The Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI): An independent international research institute, which has been engaged in environment and development issues at local, national, regional and global policy levels for more than 20 years.
  • Stakeholder Forum for a sustainable future: An international organisation working to advance sustainable development and promote democracy at a global level. Our work aims to enhance open, accountable and participatory international decision-making on sustainable development through enhancing the involvement of stakeholders in intergovernmental processes.
  • Measure What Matters is supported by the MAVA Foundation, a family-led, Swiss-based philanthropic foundation with an exclusive focus on the conservation of biodiversity.

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