The International Corporate Governance Network has recommended in its Global Governance Principles that boards should produce an integrated report.
The ICGN Principles describe the responsibilities of boards and shareholders respectively and aim to enhance dialogue between the two parties. They embody ICGN’s mission to inspire and promote effective standards of governance to help advance efficient markets world-wide.
Principle 7.5 reads:
The board should provide an integrated report that puts historical performance into context, and portrays the risks, opportunities and prospects for the company in the future, helping shareholders understand a company’s strategic objectives and its progress towards meeting them. Such disclosures should:
a) be linked to the company’s business model
b) be genuinely informative and include forward-looking elements where this will enhance understanding
c) describe the company’s strategy, and associated risks and opportunities, and explain the board’s role in assessing and overseeing strategy and the management of risks and opportunities.
d) be accessible and appropriately integrated with other information that enables investors to obtain a picture of the whole company
e) include environmental, social and governance related information that is material to the company’s strategy and performance
f) use key performance indicators that are linked to strategy and facilitate comparisons
g) use objective metrics where they apply and evidence-based estimates where they do not
h) be strengthened where possible by independent assurance that is carried out annually having regard to established disclosure standards.
The Principles are ICGN’s primary standard for well-governed companies.