Multi-criteria analysis of the GRI sustainability reports: an application to Socially Responsible Investment

  • Amelia Bilbao-Terol
  • Mar Arenas-Parra
  • Verónica Cañal-Fernández
  • Pablo Nguema Obam-Eyang

The aim of this paper is to construct a support decision-making system to evaluate the different items of corporate social responsibility. For this purpose, we propose a multi-criteria model that runs on two levels of decision-making in accordance with the hierarchical structure designed by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). Tools for modelling preferences and aggregating information are used in this framework. Arrays of normalized scores reflecting the company performance in the Aspects and Categories of GRI are then made available for the stakeholders. The design of investment portfolios uses the obtained measures of sustainability in an Extended Goal Programming model that combines financial and sustainability objectives. The proposal enables more informed decision-making for investors with social concerns that prefer direct investment and wish to make their own financial decisions. The developed methodology has been applied to 8 Spanish companies, which have been selected for their relevance in the Spanish stock market.


corporate social responsibility sustainability report global reporting initiative multi-criteria programming goal programming Socially Responsible Investment 



The authors wish to gratefully acknowledge the financial support provided by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, Projects ECO2015-66521-P, and would like to thank the anonymous reviewers and the editor for their valuable comments and suggestions to improve the quality of the paper.


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Copyright information

© The Operational Research Society 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amelia Bilbao-Terol
    • 1
  • Mar Arenas-Parra
    • 1
  • Verónica Cañal-Fernández
    • 2
  • Pablo Nguema Obam-Eyang
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Quantitative Economics, Faculty of Economics and BusinessUniversity of OviedoOviedoSpain
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsUniversity of OviedoOviedoSpain
  3. 3.University of OviedoOviedoSpain

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