Reporting frameworks

Our 2017 Corporate Responsibility Report includes Standard Disclosures of the G4 Guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative, GRI, as far as is practical for a business-to-business company in financial services. You can find the GRI Content Index in this online version of the report.

The present report also incorporates our 2017 Communication on Progress for the UN Global Compact. References to the Compact’s ten principles are incorporated into the GRI Content Index, in line with UN recommendations.

Furthermore, we continue to report against the Principles for Sustainable Insurance, PSI. Our Public Disclosure of Progress is also available in this online version of the report.

Finally, we provide detailed Climate-related Financial Disclosures, as recently developed and recommended by a task force of the Financial Stability Board.

Comment on our implementation of the GRI G4 Guidelines

In this edition of our Corporate Responsibility Report, we include Standard Disclosures of the G4 Guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), as far as is practical for a business-to-business company in financial services. The way we identify material issues has important implications for how we do this:

  • Our understanding of materiality is based on the risk expertise embedded in our business, our broad, interactive stakeholder dialogue and the view of various standard setters. We have selected the GRI's “material aspects” accordingly and refer to the associated indicators as far as we see fit for a re/insurer and can provide the data.
  • Although we engage actively in dialogue with our stakeholders, we do not currently have a formalised process for them to comment on our selection of the GRI's “material aspects” and hence neither on the content of our Corporate Responsibility Report.
  • We do, however, carefully analyse what kind of information key sustainability raters request of us and include this in our reporting if we perceive a widespread demand (see below).

Note on Indicators G4-21 and G4-22 on internal and external “aspect boundaries”: Of the “material aspects” to which we refer in the present report, we regard most as material “inside the organization”. Those aspects that are also or primarily “material outside the organization” relate to our supply chain (supplier assessments regarding environment, labour practices, human rights and impacts on society), the human rights performance of our investees and re/insurance clients (investment, freedom of association and collective bargaining, child labour, forced or compulsory labour, and assessment) and the environmental and social performance of our investees (active ownership).

Furthermore, we include the two aspects “water” and “effluents and waste” of the environmental category in our reporting, even though they are not highly material for a non-industrial company. However, many rating organisations expect information and data on them from companies in the financial services sector, too.

As a rule, all the material aspects we cover in the report are “material for all entities within the organization”, that is, for the Swiss Re holding company and all three of its Business Units. This statement only needs to be qualified for two indicators of the Financial Services Sector Supplement: FS7 and FS8 on products with a specific social or environmental benefit are not relevant for our Life Capital Business Unit.


Swiss Re is a member of various sustainability indices, including the Dow Jones Sustainability World and Europe, FTSE4Good, Euronext Vigeo Europe 120, the MSCI ESG Leaders and MSCI Global Socially Responsible (2017) families. In May 2017, Swiss Re received the AAA rating on the MSCI ESG assessment.

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