Leading authority on ESG, Prof. Robert G. Eccles, presents Piet Sanders Lecture

Erasmus School of Law is to welcome Prof. Robert G. Eccles, the world's foremost expert on integrated reporting and a leader on how companies and investors can create and report on sustainable strategies. Eccles has accepted the school’s invitation to give this year’s Piet Sanders Lecture on Friday 4 November 2022 at 1 p.m. and end at 3 p.m.

Robert G. Eccles is a leading authority on corporate purpose and sustainability from both a corporate and investor perspective. He is Visiting Professor of Management Practice at Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford and was previously a tenured professor at Harvard Business School. He is the Founding Chairman of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and one of the founders of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC).

Focus on the most important questions of today in the world of corporate sustainability

In the Piet Sanders Lecture, Professor Eccles will discuss the increasingly heated debate about the concept of ESG (environment, social, and governance). The term now means very different things to people of very different ideologies, raising the question of whether it’s still a useful concept. This debate about ESG, essentially a debate about the role of the corporation in society, is being reflected in the efforts of the IFRS Foundation’s International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB), the EU’s European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) being developed by the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG), and the U.S. SEC’s proposed rule on climate reporting. Eccles will discuss a new initiative of his to try to bridge the ideological divide. He will also provide some perspective on the future evolution of sustainability reporting standards drawing on lessons from financial reporting.

Three workshops for industry professionals and academics on Thursday, 3 November

On Thursday, 3 November, the day before the Piet Sanders Lecture, Prof. Eccles is actively participating in three workshops (by invitation only). Leading industry professionals and academics with respective views on the topics ‘Private equity (PE) and sustainability’, ‘Fund labelling’ and ‘Comparison of ISSB and EFRAG’ will be challenged by moderator Rob Bauer (Maastricht University). The debate during the workshop ‘PE and sustainability’ will be fueled by Juergen Pinker (Blackstone) and Gerbrand Haverkamp (World Benchmarking Alliance), Masja Zandbergen-Albers (Robeco), and Gert Dijkstra (APG Asset Management) will be in the lead during the workshop ‘Fund Labelling’. In the third and last workshop, ‘Comparison of ISSB and EFRAG’, a lively debate is to be expected between Erik Peek (Rotterdam School of Management) and Simon Braaksma (Philips, Vice Chair and Member of EFRAG Sustainability Reporting Board).

About the Piet Sanders Lecture series

The Piet Sanders Lecture series is named after Civil Law Professor Piet Sanders, who founded Erasmus School of Law in 1963. The lecture was established in 2021. It honours the academic achievements of Erasmus School of Law and highlights accomplished and respected scholars and their intellectual and academic contributions in the field of law. In 2021, Katharina Pistor, Professor at Columbia University, gave the first Piet Sanders lecture and hosted several workshops.

More information

For more information, please contact Communications Officer Ronald de Groot at Erasmus School of Law: rdegroot@ese.eur.nl  +31 6 53 641 846.

Click here for more information on the Piet Sanders lecture 2022.

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