Scope and Objective

Hong Kong Quality Assurance Agency (‘HKQAA’) was commissioned by the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to provide independent assurance of the ArchSD Sustainability Report 2013 (‘the Report’) which was prepared in accordance with the Core option of the G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines issued by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). The Report states ArchSD’s major activities and achievements on sustainable development from 1 January to 31 December 2012. Besides, the financial data are reported for the financial year ended 31 March 2013.

Assurance Methodology

The assurance process was undertaken with reference to the AA1000 Assurance Standard (‘AA1000AS’) aiming to assessing the Report’s adherence to the principles of Inclusivity, Materiality, and Responsiveness. In addition, reliability of the selected sustainability information and data was verified against the International Standard on Assurance Engagement 3000 (‘ISAE 3000’) – “Assurance Engagement Other Than Audits or Reviews of Historical Financial Information” for a reasonable level of assurance.

The assurance process consisted of:

  • Identification and classification of statements, figures, charts and data sets to be verified.
  • Verification of the selected representative sample of data and information consolidated in the Report, reviewing relevant documentation, interviewing responsible personnel with accountability for preparing the Report and crosschecking the raw data and evidence of the selected samples that support the reporting contents in order to reduce the risk of error or omission to an acceptably low level.
  • Provision of recommendations to ArchSD for improvement of future reporting.
Independence

HKQAA was not involved in collecting and calculating the reporting data, or in the development of the Report. HKQAA’s activities are independent from ArchSD.

Conclusion

The information presented in the Report provided a material and complete representation of the performance of ArchSD in the context of sustainable development. The verification team confirmed that the Report was prepared based on factual statements and that the data contained within the Report are accurate. It is a fair and honest representation of initiatives, targets, progress and performance on ArchSD’s sustainable development achievements.

Overall speaking, the Report provides an adequate and fair account of ArchSD’s sustainability performance on material aspects and demonstrates satisfactory disclosure of the Core options of the GRI’s G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines.

Signed on behalf of HKQAA

Signature of Connie Sham
Connie Sham
Verification Team Leader
9 September 2013