Introducing the Harmonizing Development and Private Sector Indicators (HI) Tool

Investors are demanding more transparency and accountability from corporations as they look beyond the bottom line to understand an organization’s value and long-term sustainability. ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) provides shareholders with more effective management of material opportunities and risks. Virtually all major corporations report on ESG issues, and many small and medium enterprises are factoring it into their businesses.

ESG trends and advancements are also becoming increasingly relevant to the work of leading development organizations such as the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). ESG also provides opportunities for humanitarian organizations and private sector actors to partner on addressing development and business challenges.

Noting the link between ESG targets and financial performance, the University of Notre Dame’s Pulte Institute for Global Development, in collaboration with USAID and Purdue University, has created targeted resources to stimulate public-private partnerships, engagement, and joint monitoring around ESG issues.

  • The HI Tool: The HI (Harmonizing Development and Private Sector Indicators) Tool is at the heart of this work. The HI Tool identifies existing alignments between development and business-relevant indicators. Searching the tool for indicators with a specific humanitarian challenge, sector, or business theme helps development professionals more effectively map the current alignment between USAID and private sector objectives. (Refer to the HI Tool ‘how-to guide’ for step-by-step instructions.) 
  • ESG Case Study Series: Six case studies have been compiled to provide tangible examples of ESG interpretations and applications by major private sector actors. Each case study describes how a specific national or multinational company approaches ESG, emphasizing context-relevant interpretations of materiality and reporting. Cases span a range of business specializations, including agriculture, energy, textiles, and technology.
  • ESG Use Case Series: Each of the six use cases contains specific examples for customizing searches for existing development and business indicator matches utilizing Standardized Program Structure and Definitions (SPSD), engagement objectives, business indicator sources, and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
  • ESG Private Sector Insights: The document aims to foster a basic understanding of ESG definitions, frameworks, and uses providing an overview of the current ESG landscape, the key elements, and critical considerations for advancing strategy and mitigating risks.

Additional resources have been developed to help increase mutual understanding of ESG motivations and need across multiple organizations and sectors to provide foundational knowledge about ESG from a USAID perspective, and to increase use of the HI Tool by development professionals. All resources are below. 

Use Case Series

Case Study Series


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