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January 2022

After the frenetic pace leading up to COP26, the world has taken some time to reflect on COP outcomes and ready itself for the next big push on tackling the issue of climate change.  Now that 2022 is upon us, we need to meet the climate challenges we face head on. There is no better way to do that than to streamline and add clarity to ESG data which is fast becoming the foundation of how we measure our progress against sustainability goals.

FoSDA is entering its 3rd year and its mission has never been more important. FoSDA’s goal is to work with the financial industry and policymakers to make sustainability data transparent, clear, global and decision-useful. This is critical for the financial markets to deploy capital in line with sustainability, Net Zero and Carbon Neutral commitments made by governments, regulators, corporates and citizens worldwide.

To do this, we have identified topics that our membership of data providers, owners and users can add expert recommendations, highlight best practice and identify future challenges to using ESG data. 

We welcome you to join our work and become a member, join the data council or support a workstream.  Get in touch here: and vote for next years’ workstream plans which start early next month HERE.  Thank you for being part of our FoSDA community – please forward this newsletter on and we wish you a happy, healthy and hopeful 2022.

Sherry Madera, Chair of the Future of Sustainable Data Alliance


ESG Data Gaps & Holes

The ESG Data Gaps & Holes workstream is a cornerstone of FoSDA’s work. Its output is useful for multiple stakeholders and applications; investors seeking data to deploy capital, policymakers building regulatory frameworks, and data ecosystem players looking for future guidance. The 2021 publication identified both thematic and temporal Gaps and Holes and recommended areas for deeper work. FoSDA has been pleased to present the Data Gaps & Holes findings to the NGFS Data Workstream Co-Chairs and will continue to collaborate with the next steps in the NGFS data work. The Data Gaps & Holes workstream is set to deepen it’s analysis, likely to include a data density mapping of key information points needed to fulfill existing frameworks and regulatory requirements.

Forward Looking Data

In September 2021, FoSDA published its Forward Looking Data Report. This included 3 recommendations focused on regulators, disclosure, and highlighting the challenges. In particular, the workstream cautioned the market to “beware the missing middle”, a data gap existing between the shorter-term modelling financiers excel at and the long-term risk related climate data. FoSDA has shared findings with 21 Central Banks and directly with the NGFS Data Workstream Co-Chairs. This workstream has supported additional work shared with industry by FoSDA members, OMFIF and LSEG through this deeper report “Sustainable Data – the path forward”.

Taxonomy mapping

The FoSDA Taxonomy working group produced a well-received infographic detailing existing and proposed global Taxonomies. Since then, more taxonomies have progressed or been announced and the Taxonomy working group is planning to assess the commonality between taxonomies and identify the “dark green” elements that are common worldwide. This project will serve to identify the datasets that financial firms and regulators will need and will attempt to define these datasets so that they can be sourced to a common data definition. This will allow multinational players to use data efficiently and support comparability of some aspects of taxonomies across jurisdictions.

Talent Development & Capacity Building

FoSDA’s Talent Development & Capacity Building workstream aims to create a network of educational institutions, professional bodies, industry and policymakers with a shared interest in developing talent to meet ESG and sustainable finance data requirements. Based on this network’s shared expertise, it is mapping out the most pressing skills and training needs and creating a directory of intelligence resources and training providers. The workstream is currently building a dynamic digital tool that will collate relevant content for building out ESG data skills in financial institutions, across various themes. This tool is based on the World Economic Forum’s TopLink platform, and a beta version will be released in the coming months.

ESG Data Key Upcoming Dates

February 2022: NGFS final report on Biodiversity and Financial Stability

February 2022: ISSB interviewing potential board members

February 2022: EU Sustainable Corporate Governance proposal

March 2022: UK FCA consultation on sustainable product disclosures

Q1 2022: US SEC publication of climate disclosure rules

Q1 2022: ISSB consultation on draft climate-related disclosure standard

Q1 2022: EFRAG consultation on first set of EU sustainability reporting standards

Q1 2022: NGFS final report from the workstream on bridging the data gaps

Spring 2022: NGFS climate scenarios work on sectoral refinement

25 April-8 May 2022: COP15 UN Biodiversity Conference (part two)

May 2022: BoE results of initial climate stress testing for financial sector

June 2022: EFRAG submission of initial set of draft EU sustainability reporting standards to the European Commission

H2 2022: ISSB publication of final climate-related disclosure standard