Methodology to analyse the relevance of sustainability priorities

The Relevance-Analysis checks whether the report material contains information on topics identified as relevant. As in the previous year, the identification of relevant sustainability issues was developed using the RepRisk ESG Risk Platform as well as the Materiality Map™ of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB). In order to obtain an even more comprehensive picture, it was also investigated whether companies are contributing to the biggest challenges in Switzerland or other countries in which they operate. This part of the analysis was based on the GAPFRAME ( of the Business School Lausanne. Further, the findings of the study Environmental Atlas of Swiss Supply Chains were integrated into the methodology of the relevance analysis in 2019, to identify relevant environmental hotspots in the supply chain of eight sectors.  As a result, the company, industry and country level was analysed.

Company level

Critical press articles about the company, on environmental, social and governance issues (ESG), identified via the RepRisk ESG Risk Platform

Industry level

Material sustainability issues on an industry-by-industry basis, identified via the SASB Materiality Map™the RepRisk ESG Risk Platform as well as the Environmental Atlas of Swiss Supply Chains.

Country level

Relevant country issues, identified via the GAPFRAME, which translates the Sustainable Development Goals into 24 issues relevant to all nations and businesses

The analysis took into account the inside-out and outside-in perspective on the company and industry level.

At international & supply chain level: Analysis of environmental hotspots 

In collaboration with the Federal Office For the Environment (FOEN), we incorporated the findings of the study Environmental hotspots in the supply chain of Swiss companies (2019) into the methodology of the “relevance analysis”. The study identified environmental hotspots in the supply chains of eight key Swiss industries:

  • meat processing
  • production of chemical products
  • production of machinery
  • real estate services and construction
  • health and social work
  • food trade
  • trade with clothing, textiles and footwear
  • trade with household devices

The results show the environmental impacts of each industry and its supply chain, from raw material extraction and processing at upstream stages through to direct suppliers. The calculations were based on an economic input-output model supplemented by environmental data. For each industry analysed, the Environmental Atlas gives an indication of roughly where an environmentally sustainable level compatible with planetary boundaries would lie. It also proposes steps that could be taken to design and optimise a sustainable supply chain.

As part of the focused reporting benchmark analysis 2019 and 2021, the next step is to analyse whether and to what extent Swiss companies actually report on the most relevant environmental hotspots and set targets accordingly. To find out more about the study, click here.