Sustainability governance

Embedding sustainability governance

As we embed sustainability into our business, we are also updating our processes and reporting methodology.

Board attention includes a more comprehensive discussion of the way sustainability fits in with our core business activities,
and are working toward identifying more robust goals, targets, and performance indicators over time, as well as increasing the transparency and completeness of our reporting.

The role and business of the board

The board is deeply engaged in developing and measuring the company’s long-term strategy, performance and value. We believe that it adds a valuable and diverse set of external perspectives and that robust, open debate about significant business issues brings an additional discipline to major decisions.

A schedule of formal matters reserved for the board’s decision and approval is available on our website, at

Board committees

The board has established four formal committees: audit, nomination, remuneration, and reputation & responsibility.

The chairmen and members of these committees are appointed by the board on the recommendation (where appropriate) of the nomination committee and in consultation with each relevant committee chairman. In addition to these formal board committees, the standing committee also operates with board level input.

Reputation and Responsibility Committee

Having been formalised in 2014, the remit of the Reputation and Responsibility committee expanded during 2015, reflecting Pearson’s continuing commitment and ambition around its corporate reputation, our belief in the importance of fulfilling our obligations to the communities in which we work, and maximising Pearson’s positive impact on society.

The committee’s work is closely aligned with the company’s sustainable business initiatives and our meetings are now preceded by meetings of Pearson’s Responsible Business Leadership Council (RBLC) – an internal governance group which shapes sustainable activities at operational level at Pearson.

This ensures that we are able to provide the necessary scrutiny and challenge to the council as our sustainability strategy is developed and integrated into the business.

Learn more about Reputation and Responsibility Committee and our Responsible Business Leadership Council in Sustainability and our board

Sustainability at The Heart of Our Strategy

Sustainability is critical to achieving that mission and ensuring our long-term competitiveness. Our customers, employees, partners, and learners expect us to uphold the highest business standards, continuously enhance the quality of our products, and contribute to their communities. Operating ethically and sustainably is not just a responsibility, it is a fundamental enabler of our commercial success.

I am proud of Pearson’s track record in sustainability:

  • We are a founding signatory to the United Nations (UN) Global Compact
  • We have been climate neutral since 2009
  • We are committed to reporting on efficacy – how our products and services improve learning outcomes – by 2018.
  • This year we set ourselves our long-term growth objective to reach 200 million learners annually by 2025.