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Appears in Collections:Accounting and Finance Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Sustainability reporting beyond the business case and its impact on sustainability performance: UK evidence
Author(s): Al-Shaer, Habiba
Hussainey, Khaled
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Keywords: Corporate sustainability worldviews
Sustainability reports
Sustainability performance
Textual analysis
Issue Date: Jun-2022
Date Deposited: 22-Feb-2024
Citation: Al-Shaer H & Hussainey K (2022) Sustainability reporting beyond the business case and its impact on sustainability performance: UK evidence. <i>Journal of Environmental Management</i>, 311, Art. No.: 114883.
Abstract: We explore Landrum and Ohsowski (2018)'s development model, which positions each company's sustainability reporting with multiple worldviews of corporate sustainability. We investigate the impact of sustainability report communicative actions on corporate sustainability performance. We argue that companies that comply with the reporting guidelines and adopt the business case for corporate sustainability may not capture all sustainability aspects, and therefore may not have a real impact on sustainability performance. Employing a computer-based textual analysis on a sample of UK firms that published sustainability reports during the period 2014–2018, we find that sustainability reports that communicate the message that firms understand sustainability to mean maintaining production and consumption patterns within resources capacity of the planet and coexisting in harmony with nature are likely to have a positive effect on sustainability performance. On the other hand, communicating compliance and the business-centred approach as their understanding of sustainability will negatively affect sustainability performance. Our findings offer important implications for companies who need to change their approach towards sustainability reporting and shift from the business case approach to advance to the next stage of sustainability reporting which should guide corporate decisions and actions.
DOI Link: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2022.114883
Rights: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons CC-BY license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. You are not required to obtain permission to reuse this article. To request permission for a type of use not listed, please contact Elsevier Global Rights Department.
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