Jeremy Nicholls is a director and one of the founders of Social Value International, a membership organisation for individuals and organisations supporting principles and standards in accounting for social and environmental value. He works part time with the Impact Management Project and is Professor of Social Value at Staffordshire University.
He is also a non-executive director of the FRC Group (a social business based in Liverpool), the Social Investment Business (a social investor) and the Social and Human Capital Coalition. He chairs the British Standards Institute’s social value committee and is a member of Accounting for Sustainability’s Expert Panel; the IRIS advisory committee; and the UK Social Value Taskforce.
He originally qualified as a chartered accountant, including time as the Finance Director for Tanzania Railways.
“But how can it be neutral?” In the first of our new Nicholls & Dimes series, social value expert Jeremy Nicholls responds to the former Bank of England Governor – and asks how eminent economists can ignore the fundamental role of accounting.
Are claims made in social impact measurement reports accurate? Someone should check, says Jeremy Nicholls. After all, investors receive independently audited financial reports. Why shouldn’t beneficiaries receive the same?
Jeremy Nicholls argues that the world needs to change the way that it accounts for value. This is vital to reduce ever-increasing inequality, which – if it isn’t halted – will take us back to a feudal society.
"Could we have created more value with the resources we have available?" This is the question that board members need to be asking in order to truly embed an effective impact measurement approach in their organisations.
"Few organisations are geared up to know if they are creating as much social value as they can with the resources they have" – Jeremy Nicholls argues that better is not good enough, it's time to start optimising social value creation.