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Creating value through the balanced scorecard: how does it work?

Josep Llach (University of Girona, Girona, Spain)
Llorenç Bagur (Barcelona School of Management, Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain)
Jordi Perramon (Barcelona School of Management, Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain)
Frederic Marimon (School of Economics and Business, International University of Catalonia, Barcelona, Spain)

Management Decision

ISSN: 0025-1747

Article publication date: 20 November 2017




The purpose of this paper is to further research on the Kaplan and Norton (1996) balanced scorecard (BSC) model after having discerned that previous work has so far neglected to explore the interrelationships between the model’s dimensions and the influence contextual factors may have.


The data set used to meet this paper’s main objectives was collected using a structured online survey sent to the member companies of the Catalan Association of Accounting and Management (ACCID). Specifically, the surveys were directed to the heads of the finance departments. From the 3,500 mails sent, 336 companies decided to participate in the study. These figures represent an acceptable response rate of 9.6 per cent. As 83 of the companies declared that they would only use financial indicators, the final study sample totalled 253 firms.


The results demonstrate the mediating effects intermediate constructs have, and highlight how important leadership is in achieving success or high performance. These results follow on from previous empirical literature that analysed other management systems such as the Baldrige, the EFQM or the Deming models. In addition, some differences in the relationships as per the contextual factors studied have been detected. Therefore, the conclusions reached in this paper will be of interest to both academics and professionals in perceiving and understanding the logical flow of consequences any decision taken will produce.


The authors’ main contributions are: to have strictly followed the theoretical BSC model by combining both formative and reflective dimensions using the emerging partial least squares methodology; to have based the study on 253 firms and to have used 37 category indicators which, to our knowledge, are more than any other previous work; to have developed a mediation model designed to appreciate the interrelationships the dimensions in the BSC model have; to have analysed the possible differences there are in the interrelationships between the dimensions using two widely accepted influencing contextual factors in current literature, namely a firm’s size and its typology.



This research was supported by the Accounting and Management Catalan Association, Spain within the project Anàlisi de les relacions causa-efecte entre perspectives: del Quadre de comandament integral: Efecte de les relacions indirectes i les variables d’entorn en la cadena de valor de Kaplan i Norton. The authors are grateful to Oriol Amat and the rest of the scientific committee of ACCID to help the authors to conduct this challenging project. In addition, it has been partially funded by the University of Girona MPCUdG2016/057.


Llach, J., Bagur, L., Perramon, J. and Marimon, F. (2017), "Creating value through the balanced scorecard: how does it work?", Management Decision, Vol. 55 No. 10, pp. 2181-2199.



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