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Announcing The Climate Board’s 2023 Research Priorities

Happy New Year to all! 2022 was a big year for The Climate Board, but we’re even more excited for 2023. We’re growing quickly, serving more member companies in a growing range of interrelated industries. We’re also adding new team members who bring even more climate and sustainability expertise. All that means we can set our most ambitious and impactful research agenda yet. Here’s what’s on tap for the year ahead: 


Blueprint for the Effective Sustainability Function
Last year, research such as our Sustainability Function Benchmarking Survey revealed incredible variation in how companies staff, structure, resource, and empower their sustainability functions. It also laid bare the terrible disconnects between goals, actions, and results. In too many cases, sustainability leaders know what needs to be done, but aren’t able to make the business case for change. That leaves their companies at a competitive disadvantage in an increasingly climate-conscious economy—and it leaves those sustainability leaders vulnerable when budgets get tight. But in some cases, sustainability leaders are influential, effective, and indisputably valued. What’s so different about leaders? That’s exactly what we’ll be exploring throughout the year. Our team will be identifying and amplifying best practices across a mission-critical skillset, including: 

  • Internal and external communication—How do effective sustainability leaders get their message across, and how should the message change depending on the audience? 
  • Organizational structure and relationships—Which are the most important connections to build within complex organizations, and how have the most successful sustainability leaders achieved them? 
  • Financial integration—How do effective leaders secure capex and opex for important sustainability initiatives? How do they measure the return on those efforts? How do internal carbon prices and environmental P&Ls fit in? 

Those are just a few of the questions we’ll be asking—and answering—as we strive to support sustainability leaders’ impact. But it’s not all we’ll be doing. There’s also… 

Playbook for Scope 3 

Yes, it’s hard to measure Scope 3 emissions. Yes, it’s hard to influence suppliers and other players in the value chain who are responsible for the emissions that make up your Scope 3. Yes, you’re going to have to do those things sooner rather than later. No, they’re not impossible. We’re unpacking the methods and tactics companies all over the world are using to get their hands around these tricky concepts. Nobody has it all figured out, but there are foundations you can lay down today—and mistakes you can avoid—to keep a step ahead of reporting mandates and strengthen your value chain. In the first part of the year, we’ll be looking at best practices in Scope 3 measurement and reporting. After that, we’ll be profiling examples of successful value chain partnerships that reduce emissions while also enhancing the core business.  

Demystifying Climate Tech 

With billions of dollars supporting the development of from low-carbon building materials to climate risk analytics to carbon capture, it can be hard to know what’s even real, let alone what’s right for your business. The Climate Board can help with frameworks to evaluate emerging technologies and assess vendors, so you can make more confident decisions and justify your recommendations to your executives. 

2023 Investor Scan 

Markets are fickle, and investor attitudes toward ESG seem to change with the seasons. Political backlash, greenwashing concerns, turbulent energy markets, and evolving consumer attitudes all mean it’s dangerous to assume capital will flow as it has in the past. You need to know what different investor classes are looking for right now and how best to respond. That’s why The Climate Board is preparing its first ever Investor Scan with timely, no-nonsense analysis of trends in ESG investor attitudes and behaviors. 


“Our 2023 Research Agenda, combined with the tailored presentation of that research to each member’s business needs, will give sustainability and finance executives practical tools and knowledge to do their jobs effectively”

Rob Griffen, Executive Chairman and Co-Founder


How did The Climate Board choose this agenda? 

We’re talking with our members every day about their challenges and uncertainties. We’re also tapping our research network of hundreds of companies to find the right answers—and the right questions. The focus areas described above came up over and over in interviews, surveys, and our ongoing member conversations.  


“Our research agenda is the result of rigorous engagement with our members and other market participants representing over 150 interactions during the past 12 months. As we enter 2023 we are excited to dive into researching what we know are the most pressing issues from the sustainability community”

Michael Barbera, CFO and Founding Partner 


Can I participate in the research? 

Absolutely! We’d love to speak to you. If you have a story you’d like to share with us, or just want to discuss ideas with our research team, send us a note at research@theclimateboard.com 


How can I get access to the results? 

We’ll be publishing insights, hosting events, and releasing helpful tools throughout the year. Climate Board members enjoy full and unlimited access to all of our research. If you’re already a member, your dedicated Research Partner will be sure you are the first to know when something new is ready, and you can explore our library here. Not a member yet? Subscribe for updates. 


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