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Implementing strategies through management control systems: the case of sustainability

Angelo Riccaboni (University of Siena, Siena, Italy)
Emilia Luisa Leone (University of Siena, Siena, Italy)

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management

ISSN: 1741-0401

Article publication date: 19 January 2010




This paper aims to explore if and how management control sysems (MCS) have a role in implementing sustainable strategies. In particular, the paper aims to investigate how MCS work in order to translate these strategies into action and how they should be modified when a strategic change in a sustainable direction occurs.


The research relies upon a deeply conducted case study, drawing evidence from documentary research and field research.


Relying upon the case of Procter & Gamble (P&G), the paper finds that integration with the traditional planning and monitoring systems, combination of both formal and informal controls, coordination across business units and decentralized structures are key‐factors for successful implementation of sustainability‐oriented strategies.


From a theoretical point of view, it has been observed that research in the field of social and environmental accounting has been mainly focused on social and environmental reporting, disclosure initiatives and their linkages to other attributes of performance, such as economic or financial outcomes. The paper contributes to developing a debate on the potential of MCS in embracing social and environmental issues as well as in producing social and environmental information useful for internal users in decision‐making processes.



Riccaboni, A. and Luisa Leone, E. (2010), "Implementing strategies through management control systems: the case of sustainability", International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, Vol. 59 No. 2, pp. 130-144.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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