Social Accounting

Social accounting and auditing is a way of measuring and reporting on an organisation's social and ethical performance. An organisation which takes on an audit makes itself accountable to its stakeholders and commits itself to following the audits recommendations.

The New Economics Foundation (nef) helped to make this a mainstream approach and demonstrated how these approaches enable companies to manage more effectively. From 1995 to 2000 nef carried out a series of pioneering social audits of companies (Camelot, The Body Shop, Traidcraft, the Co-operative Wholesale Society, Ben and Jerry's) as well as international public and voluntary sector organisations.

Under the Social Enterprise Quality & Impact Project, nef has also worked in partnership with the Social Audit Network on a framework for social accounting that is 'scale-able' and appropriate for smaller social enterprises and community organisations.

For a live example of social audited accounts, visit