Our Standards

B Lab’s standards are at the heart of the B Corp movement and our Theory of Change, defining social, environmental, and governance best practices for businesses. Our standards serve as the foundation for everything our network does – from B Corp Certification to our policy work worldwide. Learn more about how our standards are developed, and how they’re driving economic system change.

Standards Development & Governance

As the B Corp movement grows, B Lab must continually evolve the tools and strategies we use to effectively evaluate different industries, policies, and practices. The B Impact Assessment and our standards are independently governed by our Standards Advisory Council, curated by B Lab, and improved by our community of users and stakeholders.

To date, our community includes over 70 B Corps across Africa. Over 6000 companies in Africa measure and manage their impact using the B Impact Assessment and the SDG Action Manager.

Our global community consists of over 8,000 B Corps in 101 countries and 162 industries, over 8,000 benefit corporations, and more than 200,000 companies manage their impact using our tools.

Evolving Performance Requirements

We update and improve our standards on a regular basis. While specific revision mechanisms will vary by the nature of the project, all standards development projects are informed by research and multi-stakeholder input. B Lab’s standards are independently governed by B Lab’s Standards Advisory Council and Board of Directors, with input from external stakeholders and various Working and Advisory Groups.

Evolving the standards for B Corp Certification

Adapting and advancing performance requirements through community and stakeholder feedback.

The second public consultation has now launched!

We have reached a vital juncture in the evolution of the standards for B Corp Certification. We’re sharing the latest draft of the standards in a second public consultation and need your feedback. The latest draft of the standards is comprehensive, incorporating feedback from the first consultation, including a need to contextualize the standards to individual companies according to their size and sector, as well as providing clearer compliance criteria and implementation guidance.

With this in mind, we have created a new, interactive website to allow you to navigate the standards and share your feedback with ease. Your feedback is mission-critical. We need your help to understand if this latest draft is ambitious, clear, and attainable for your company while delivering the impact the world needs. Have your say.

Why are we evolving the standards?

In December 2020, B Lab announced a review of the performance requirements for B Corp Certification. This was initiated in response to community and stakeholder feedback regarding evolving conceptions of leadership in social and environmental performance.

As the climate crisis intensifies and societal inequality grows, the need to bring about systemic change is clear. We must advance the standards for B Corp Certification to meet the magnitude of the challenge ahead.

The new standards will provide clarity for companies, galvanizing the most impactful business actions and focusing on what really matters, meaningfully demonstrating the leadership role that B Corps and the B Corp movement play in the world.

While significant improvements have been made to our certification standards since B Lab began in 2006 (they have been revised six times), the core aspects of the B Impact Assessment have remained consistent — including the fact that the certification is rooted in a company achieving an overall verified score of 80 through a flexible range of practices and attributes. This approach has been tremendously valuable and impactful in the first 15 years of this movement, yet it has also demonstrated its limitations and challenges. 

We see this evolution as an opportunity to ask big questions about how the current standards for B Corp Certification meet the needs of the moment, and how we can optimize the B Corp movement for the future.

In May 2023, we shared the Preliminary Consultation Summary Report, providing an overview of the September-November 2022 preliminary consultation results and highlighting the potential ways that prevalent feedback could be addressed in the next draft of the standards for B Corp Certification.

The second consultation began on 16 January 2024 through 26 March 2024. Visit the blog here for more information on how you can engage.

For more information, please review these Frequently Asked Questions, as well as our previous announcements:

  • Revisiting the proposed changes to the standards for B Corp Certification (27 October, 2023)
  • Preliminary Consultation Suggests New B Corp Standards Are Ambitious yet Attainable (15 May, 2023)
  • A call for feedback on the draft of the new standards for B Corp Certification (23 September 2022)
  • Update on the Future of the B Corp Certification Performance Requirements (23 February 2022)
  • B Corp Performance Requirements Review updates: B Lab expands Regional Standards Advisory Groups, launches next round of community engagement, and updated project timeline (15 September 2021
  • Performance Requirements Review Update: Survey Results and Next Steps (21 April 2021)
  • Call for Input on B Corp Certification Performance Requirements (2 December 2020)

Update on the timeline: A previous version of this page shared alternative timelines around the implementation of the new standards. B Lab continues to develop the rollout and transition timeline for the new standards, including improved digital experiences and certification processes.