Climate performance in publicly traded companies has become an important focus for climate action. Non–state actor–led initiatives have emerged as influential governors in this arena, intended to plug gaps in public climate change regulation. This article addresses the key question, are such non–state led climate initiatives exerting a positive influence on corporate climate performance? To answer this question, we empirically evaluate the effects of eighteen such climate initiatives on corporate climate performance, distinguishing between “internal” and “external” initiatives. Based on an original data set of corporate climate initiatives that prioritize climate performance in the private sector, we find that each additional climate initiative has little to no impact on climate performance, modeled as scope 1 direct emissions, but does exert a positive influence on scope 2 indirect emissions. Our findings have implications for the trajectory of the private sector’s climate transition, as well as the potential of corporate initiatives to steward effective climate action.

Supplementary data

You do not currently have access to this content.