Extending the application of stakeholder influence strategies to environmental disclosures: An exploratory study from a developing country

Evangeline Elijido‐Ten (Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, Australia)
Louise Kloot (Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, Australia)
Peter Clarkson (UQ Business School, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia and Faculty of Business Administration, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, Canada)

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

ISSN: 0951-3574

Publication date: 26 October 2010

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide insights into stakeholder expectations regarding the types of disclosures a firm should make, and if dissatisfied with the disclosure policy, whether it will use different intervention strategies in an attempt to induce the desired disclosure outcome.

Design/methodology/approach

An inductive qualitative framework is used in the study. In‐depth interviews, triangulated against relevant web site and media releases, are used to identify the salient stakeholders and the major environmental issues in Malaysia. Then an experimental approach is used based on role‐playing whereby experienced participants are introduced to hypothetical vignettes that relate to environmental issues identified.

Findings

The results indicate that the preferred form of disclosure is for the firms to “defend” the reasons behind the environmental event and/or explain what has been done to rectify the situation. With relatively few exceptions, the preferred strategies chosen by various participants align well with the influence strategies identified by Frooman. The findings confirm that although Frooman's model is useful in predicting stakeholder influence strategies, its effectiveness is tempered by the level of significance placed on the event by the stakeholders.

Research limitations/implications

Although based on a small sample, the results suggest that stakeholder theory has much to offer in terms of understanding management/stakeholder behaviour and corporate environmental disclosures.

Originality/value

The paper extends the application of stakeholder influence strategies in the “environmental reporting” domain. Likewise, it attempts to address the scarcity of literature taking the view of a wide array of stakeholders and how they choose to influence the firm. Finally, it confirms that stakeholder theory can be extended to aid the understanding of events in non‐western developing economies such as Malaysia.

Keywords

Citation

Elijido‐Ten, E., Kloot, L. and Clarkson, P. (2010), "Extending the application of stakeholder influence strategies to environmental disclosures: An exploratory study from a developing country", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 23 No. 8, pp. 1032-1059. https://doi.org/10.1108/09513571011092547

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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