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Investigating the sustainability habitus: insights from Aramex’s sustainability practices and reports

Larissa von Alberti-Alhtaybat (Prince Mohammad Bin Salman College of Business and Entrepreneurship, King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia)
Zaidoon Alhatabat (Faculty of Business, Philadelphia University, Amman, Jordan)
Khaldoon Al-Htaybat (Department of Accounting, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)

Meditari Accountancy Research

ISSN: 2049-372X

Article publication date: 3 December 2020

Issue publication date: 23 June 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

The current study aims to investigate the development of the sustainability habitus in the Arab Middle East (ME) based on the pioneer case organisation, Aramex, which has been the pioneer of sustainability practices and reporting. The context of the Arab region, as well as the global logistics sector, has significantly influenced the development of sustainable development at Aramex, as illustrated by their sustainability and integrated reports.

Design/methodology/approach

The research approach of the current study is qualitative on the basis of open and selective coding techniques. The case organisation’s annual sustainability and integrated reports and additional relevant publicised information are analysed. Using publicised information from different sources increases triangulation and allows for more reliable findings. The theoretical context is Bourdieu’s habitus and field, which also reflects the interplay between habitus and field, and how Aramex’s sustainability practices and reports are being constructed.

Findings

The findings reflect Aramex’s sustainability practices and related reporting, subsumed in its organisational sustainability habitus. They span the sustainability reporting endeavours of the case organisation, commencing with the first sustainability report in 2006 until the most recent annual integrated report in 2018. Aramex is the precursor of sustainability and integrated reporting (IR) in the ME and is a significant contributor to developing a sustainability habitus in the region. The findings outline various elements of their reports as evidence of sustainability practices and reporting in the ME and the global logistics sector and as an illustration of the developing sustainability habitus.

Originality/value

This study reviews the original case of Aramex and its sustainability and IR practices. It also discusses the company’s practices and reporting details with regard to its organisational sustainability habitus and interplay with the local, Arab World and global, logistics sector, fields.

Keywords

Citation

von Alberti-Alhtaybat, L., Alhatabat, Z. and Al-Htaybat, K. (2021), "Investigating the sustainability habitus: insights from Aramex’s sustainability practices and reports", Meditari Accountancy Research, Vol. 29 No. 3, pp. 477-501. https://doi.org/10.1108/MEDAR-08-2019-0545

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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