ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance)

Learn about the environmental, social, and governance resources available at the GSB Library for current Stanford faculty, staff, and students.


According to Gartner Research, "Environmental, social and governance (ESG) refers to a collection of corporate performance evaluation criteria that assess the robustness of a company’s governance mechanisms and its ability to effectively manage its environmental and social impacts."

ESG Data

ESG Scores

Some vendors attribute letter grade or percentage ESG scores to companies based on weighted calculations of data points that make up the environmental, social, and governance pillars.

ESG Metrics

Many providers also collect and harmonize specific data points/metrics/variables related to a company's ESG performance. These data points are often then used to calculate their scores. ESG criteria are observed in different formats, the most common are:

  • Boolean Values - Boolean metrics are binary TRUE or FALSE value answers to ESG-related questions, such as "Has the company set targets or objectives to be achieved on water efficiency?" or "Does the company have a policy regarding the size of its board?"
  • Numerical Values - Numerical values express quantifiable measures about a company, such as the total number of employees or number of women on a board of directors.
  • Ratios & Percentages - Two or more ESG metrics used in a proprietary formula to form new metrics, such as Total Energy Use / Total Revenue or Non-audit to Audit Fee Ratio.

Below are FAQs about where to find specific types of ESG metrics at Stanford.