Sustainability Reporting - Guidelines for Sustainability Reporting based on reporting processes of VA Technologie and Österreichische Bundesforste

Scientific attendance of sustainability reporting processes in two partner enterprises (VA Tech and ÖBf AG). Development of the guideline "Reporting about Sustainability" based on these practical experiences.

Short Description




The project Sustainability Reporting developed the necessary system-, target- and transfer- knowledge to support companies in an authentic sustainability reporting process. Based on an analysis of national and international experiences guidelines, models and methods were developed. Subsequently they were tested by coaching two companies in their sustainability reporting process. The two companies were VA Technologie AG (VA Tech) and the Austrian Federal Forestry Company (ÖBf). Starting from this practical experience and the results of the international analysis the concept was evaluated, adapted and finally summarised in guidelines.

Goals of the project

  1. Preparation of a Basic Tool
  2. Support and quality assurance during the reporting process at the VA Tech and ÖBf
  3. Suggestions for the VA Tech und ÖBf reports 2003
  4. Preparation of a Manual for Sustainability Reporting

While coaching the two companies the following main quality criteria for sustainability reporting were:

  • Essential Sustainability Aspects
  • Holistic Presentation of the Company's Activities
  • Integration of the three columns of sustainability
  • Reference to Long-term and Strategy
  • Identification and Description of Stakeholder

Results of the project

The results of the project Sustainability Reporting are:

Basic Tool

As a first result of the project a basic tool for sustainability reporting was developed based on the evaluation of international reporting experiences. It was used as an instrument for coaching the two Austrian case companies VA Technologie AG and the Austrian Federal Forestry Company within their sustainability reporting process.

Sustainability Reports of VA Tech and ÖBf

Further results were the sustainability reports for the year 2002 of the companies VA Tech and ÖBf, which are according to the developed quality criteria of goal 2. The ÖBf report even combined the sustainability report with their business report. The reports serve as bench marks for Austria and beyond.

Guidelines for Sustainability Reporting

Another result of the project is also a guideline for sustainability reporting. Both the results of the evaluation of international reporting processes as well as the practical experience of coaching the two companies were integrated in the guidelines. The guidelines give a structured overview for other companies on how they can initiate and publish a high-value sustainability report. It decribes a path how the performance, goals and activities of a company can be presented with a perspective on sustainability. The guidelines were published under the title "Reporting about Sustainability. 7 Steps to a Successful Sustainability Report".

Project Partners

Project management

Mag. Karl Resel
Österreichisches Institut für Nachhaltige Entwicklung (ÖIN)

Project partners

  • VA Technologie AG
  • Österreichische Bundesforste AG

Contact Address

Mag. Karl Resel
Austrian Institute for Sustainable Development
c/o University of Agricultural Sciences Vienna
Lindengasse 2/12, A-1070 Wien
Tel.: +43 (1) 5246847-18
Tel.: +43 (1) 5246847-20