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Guidance Report

Navigating ESG Reporting Frameworks:
A Comprehensive Guide

August 31, 2022

As expectations to report ESG data have intensified, myriad ESG reporting frameworks have been developed to guide organizations' reporting of their sustainability-related impacts, performance, risks, opportunities, and strategies. While all frameworks demand some form of ESG data, they vary widely in reporting methodology, disclosure content, target audience, and level of industry adoption. This Guidance Report aims to provide clarity on the current ESG reporting landscape by identifying, describing, and categorizing the key ESG reporting frameworks and offering insight into why, how, and when they should be applied. Given the Verdani Institute for the Built Environment’s (VIBE) focus on built environment sustainability, the frameworks covered are most relevant for the commercial real estate industry, yet this information is also intended to be useful for most U.S.-based companies.

41 ESG reporting frameworks reviewed



This Guidance Report organizes 41 frameworks into five categories:

  • standards and guidance frameworks

  • voluntary disclosure frameworks

  • involuntary third-party aggregators

  • net zero emissions initiatives

  • regulatory frameworks


For each category, we provide tables that allow for easy interpretation of the frameworks’ similarities and differences, offering companies, investors, and regulators a comprehensive guide to disclosures and their applications.

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This guidance report was created by a passionate non-profit organization with a dedicated team that includes many volunteers. Your generous donation today helps make this critical work possible.


Author: Carli Schoenleber, Content and Engagement Specialist, VIBE and Verdani Partners


Research and Editing: Reagan Redd, Research Assistant, VIBE


Editor: Bennett Rea, Editor, VIBE


Content Advisors: Daniele Horton, Chika Acholonu, Zach Brown, Shubha Maheshwari, Ying (Paris) Mo

Project Management: Julie Jacobson, Executive Director, VIBE; Senior ESG Manager, Verdani Partners

Graphic Designers: Art Ace Samson, VIBE, and Jackie Royds and Cassandra Taylor, Verdani Partners

Volunteers: Julia Lavarnway, Jiaqi Zhang, Coral Tapia, Blair Englert, Rahmel Evans, Raeah Woodson

Full credits in report

Sponsors: Verdani Partners and GID

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