In the introductory lecture, we discuss the multidimensional aspects of corporate sustainability performance in the areas of the financial/quantitative economic sustainability performance (ESP) and non-financial/qualitative environmental, ethical, social, and governance (EESG) sustainability performance. The contribution of ESP and EESG dimensions of sustainability performance to overall corporate performance in creating shareholder value and in protecting the interests of other stakeholders depends on whether these sustainability performance dimensions are viewed and treated as complementing/completing each other or conflicting/competing with each other.

This course explores these contradictory views on corporate sustainability and offers suggestions for sustainability performance congruence in all five dimensions. Theoretically, management engagement in EESG activities and performance can be viewed as value-increasing or value-decreasing for investors. On one hand, companies that effectively manage their business sustainability and improve EESG performance enhance their reputation, fulfill their social and environmental responsibility, and promote a corporate culture of integrity and competency. On the other hand, companies can only survive and generate sustainable performance when they continue to be profitable and are able to create shareholder value.

Nonetheless, ESP and EESG dimensions of sustainability performance supplement each other and are not mutually exclusive. Companies that are governed effectively, are socially and environmentally responsible and conduct themselves ethically are expected to produce sustainable performance, create shareholder value and gain investor confidence and public trust. In this context, sustainability focuses on business activities that generate long-term ESP of firm value maximization as well as voluntary activities that result in the achievement of EESG sustainability performance that concerns all stakeholders.

The main focus of this course is on economic sustainability performance, and the next course examines non-financial dimensions of sustainability performance.

Course Series

This course is included in the following series:

4 CoursesCorporate Sustainability

  1. An Introduction to Corporate Sustainability Performance, Reporting, and Assurance
  2. Relevance and Importance of Economic Sustainability Performance
  3. Non-Financial Sustainability Performance
  4. Drivers, Guidelines, and Future of Corporate Sustainability
Learning Objectives
  • Recognize financial/quantitative economic sustainability performance (ESP).
  • Recognize Non-financial/qualitative environmental, ethical, social and governance (EESG) sustainability performance.
  • Explore the tensions between ESP and EESG dimensions of sustainability performance.
  • Recognize economic value versus market value.
  • Recognize short-term economic performance versus long-term economic performance.
  • Explore drivers and incentives to focus on short-term financial performance and its consequences.
  • Explore how to report financial economic sustainability performance.
  • Explore Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) of economic sustainability performance.
Last updated/reviewed: August 12, 2023
4 Reviews (13 ratings)


Member's Profile
I was struck by the instructor's boldness in recommending that companies discontinue issuing quarterly earnings guidance. I would like to hear more of his thoughts about how we as a society - companies and investors - can make that a reality.

Member's Profile
This was a good presentation of what is required for financial reporting and why it can be relied upon. I am looking forward to more information in future courses about what is included in sustainability reporting.

Member's Profile
As a former Internal Auditor with a passion for doing things right the first time, this course confirmed my beliefs of the importance of ensuring financial economic sustainability.

Member's Profile
Excellent content, Instructor talks a bit too slow.

Course Complexity: Intermediate

No Advanced Preparation or Prerequisites are needed for this course, but completion of the other courses in this series will be helpful.

Education Provider Information
Company: Illumeo, Inc., 75 East Santa Clara St., Suite 1215, San Jose, CA 95113
Contact: For more information regarding this course, including complaint and cancellation policies, please contact our offices at (408) 400- 3993 or send an e-mail to .
Instructor for this course
Course Syllabus
  Introduction to Economic Sustainability Performance1:48
Reporting and Firm Value
  Corporate Reporting 10:50
  Financial Reporting Process 8:30
  Financial Reporting Process (Continued)9:48
  Firm Value 11:09
  Firm Value (Continued)9:56
  Financial/Economic Sustainability Performance 8:36
Internal Controls and Conclusion
  Internal Control Reporting 12:39
  Integrated Financial and Internal Control Reporting 14:42
Continuous Play
  Relevance and Importance of Economic Sustainability Performance1:27:58
  Slides: Relevance and Importance of Economic Sustainability PerformancePDF
  Relevance and Importance of Economic Sustainability Performance Glossary/IndexPDF