Country for PR: United States
Contributor: PR Newswire New York
Monday, December 13 2021 - 21:00
Boards Are Committed to Addressing Climate Change, but Knowledge and Experience Gaps in the Boardroom May Impact Ability to Drive Future Change according to New Report from Heidrick & Struggles and INSEAD
CHICAGO and PARIS, Dec. 13, 2021 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ --

- Report shows potential competency gap as combined climate change knowledge 
and board-relevant business experience not widely present

- 50% of all board members expressed concerns with the level of reporting they 
receive on climate change progress

- 75% of boards believe climate change is important to companies' success, yet 
few board governance measures link executive performance to climate change goals

Heidrick & Struggles ( 
) (NASDAQ: HSII), a premier provider of global leadership advisory and 
on-demand talent solutions, and INSEAD ( 
), the business school for the world, released today a new report, Changing the 
Climate in the Boardroom ( 
), that reveals how 301 board members in 43 countries, primarily in North 
America and Western Europe, view their boards' action on climate change. 

The survey revealed signs of continued progress in corporate commitment to 
climate change. 75% of boards believe climate change is very, or entirely 
important, to the strategic success of their companies, with 72% reporting 
confidence that their company will reach its climate change goals.

The more concerning findings centered on competency, knowledge and 

    -- 50% of all board members expressed concerns with the level of reporting 
       they receive on climate change progress. 
    -- 69% said climate change knowledge is not a formal requirement for 
       joining their board, and climate change knowledge is not included 
       in their board's competency matrix. 
    -- 65% said that knowledge of climate change is not a formal requirement in 
       CEO selection. 
    -- 74% of boards do not prioritize climate change in executive performance 

The data also revealed a talent paradox: the best leaders on climate change 
often do not have board experience, and those with skills to navigate board 
dynamics often lack true understanding of climate change. 

"As companies continue to evolve their ESG efforts – marked by real shifts in 
priorities in this pandemic era – boards whose primary focus is enforcing good 
corporate governance must lead on climate change. Regulatory and other 
pressures are converging to influence access to capital, as insurers, investors 
and lenders are increasingly requiring ESG disclosure that mirrors financial 
reporting to secure funding," said Louis Besland ( 
), Partner in Heidrick & Struggles' London and Paris offices and a member of 
the Industrial and CEO & Board of Directors practices.

Most companies have implemented the basic tenets of good corporate governance 
related to climate change. Over 80% of companies have someone that is 
responsible for reporting on climate change to the board. But the scope of 
emissions targets are limited: only 16% reported their companies have targets 
for carbon emissions beyond their control (including their suppliers' and end 
users' emissions).

"The notion of what constitutes effective climate change governance is evolving 
as global dynamics, stakeholders and activists' pressure take hold. It is 
increasingly a top focus – from investors for whom climate is a priority in 
their financial-backing of organizations, to boards of directors scrutinized to 
integrate climate transition as part of the strategy; and from increased 
societal scrutiny around greenwashing with clearer metrics available on impact 
and results that count," said Sonia Tatar ( 
), Executive Director at the INSEAD Corporate Governance Centre ( 
) which led the survey from the school.

The report from Heidrick & Struggles and INSEAD includes several practical 
measures boards can take to ensure companies are ready to meet the growing 
demands of stakeholders:

    -- Consider adding more climate change voices with relevant expertise to 
       the boardroom. 
    -- Create board chair accountability on the processes and dynamics that 
       support advancing climate change as, increasingly, companies that lack 
       the ability to prove ESG metrics or meet stated goals may find they have 
       limited access to capital in the future. 
    -- Anchor climate change strategy in social and organizational purpose, and 
       connect it to specific operations. 
    -- Integrate climate change objectives into executive compensation and 
       search strategies, especially for the CEO. 
    -- Build climate-related disclosures with the same rigor required of 
       financial disclosures.

About the Report
The survey was conducted during September and October 2021 through the global 
INSEAD and Heidrick & Struggles corporate governance networks. 301 respondents 
from 43 countries completed surveys, and 74% of respondents were at companies 
headquartered in North America and Western Europe. Board members were from a 
wide-range of industry sectors and sizes. 227 respondents were non-executive 
directors from various board committees, with audit, nomination and 
remuneration being the most common functions. Notably, 77 were members of a 
sustainability committee.

About Heidrick & Struggles
Heidrick & Struggles (Nasdaq: HSII) is a premier provider of global leadership 
advisory and on-demand talent solutions, serving the senior-level talent and 
consulting needs of the world's top organizations. In our role as trusted 
leadership advisors, we partner with our clients to develop future-ready 
leaders and organizations, bringing together our services and offerings in 
executive search, diversity and inclusion, leadership assessment and 
development, organization and team acceleration, culture shaping and on-demand, 
independent talent solutions. Heidrick & Struggles pioneered the profession of 
executive search more than 65 years ago. Today, the firm provides integrated 
talent and human capital solutions to help our clients change the world, one 
leadership team at a time.(R)

About INSEAD, The Business School for the World
As one of the world's leading and largest graduate business schools, INSEAD 
brings together people, cultures and ideas to develop responsible leaders who 
transform business and society. Our research, teaching and partnerships reflect 
this global perspective and cultural diversity.

With locations in Europe (France), Asia (Singapore), the Middle East (Abu 
Dhabi), and now North America (San Francisco), INSEAD's business education and 
research spans four regions. Our 168 renowned Faculty members from 41 countries 
inspire more than 1,100 degree participants annually in our Master in 
Management,  MBA, Global Executive MBA, Specialised Master's degrees (Executive 
Master in Finance and Executive Master in Change) and PhD programmes. In 
addition, more than 12,400 executives participate in INSEAD Executive Education 
programmes each year.

INSEAD continues to conduct cutting-edge research and innovate across all our 
programmes. We provide business leaders with the knowledge and awareness to 
operate anywhere. Our core values drive academic excellence and serve the 
global community as The Business School for the World.

About INSEAD Corporate Governance Centre
The INSEAD Corporate Governance Centre (ICGC) has been actively engaged in 
making a distinctive contribution to the knowledge and practice of corporate 
governance globally. Our vision is to be the leading center for research, 
innovation, and impact in the field of corporate governance. Through its 
educational portfolio and advocacy, the ICGC seeks to build greater trust 
within the public and stakeholder communities, so that businesses are a strong 
force for improvement, not only of economic markets but also for the global 
societal environment. 

Media Contacts
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SOURCE  Heidrick & Struggles International, Inc.