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Social and environmental accounting in North America: A Research Note

Sustainability, Environmental Performance and Disclosures

ISBN: 978-1-84950-764-6, eISBN: 978-1-84950-765-3

Publication date: 16 December 2009


This investigation/report/reflection was motivated largely by the occasion of the first Centre for Social and Environmental Accounting Research (CSEAR) “Summer School” in North America.1 But its roots reach down as well to other recent reflection/investigation pieces, in particular, Mathews (1997), Gray (2002, 2006), and Deegan and Soltys (2007). The last of these authors note (p. 82) that CSEAR Summer Schools were initiated in Australasia, at least partly as a means to spur interest and activity in social and environmental accounting (SEA) research. So, too, was the first North American CSEAR Summer School.2 We believe, therefore, that it is worthwhile to attempt in some way to identify where SEA currently stands as a field of interest within the broader academic accounting domain in Canada and the United States.3 As well, however, we believe this is a meaningful time for integrating our views on the future of our chosen academic sub-discipline with those of Gray (2002), Deegan and Soltys (2007), and others. Thus, as the title suggests, we seek to identify (1) who the SEA researchers in North America are; (2) the degree to which North American–based accounting research journals publish SEA-related research; and (3) where we, the SEA sub-discipline within North America, might be headed. We begin with the who.


Cho, C.H. and Patten, D.M. (2009), "Social and environmental accounting in North America: A Research Note", Freedman, M. and Jaggi, B. (Ed.) Sustainability, Environmental Performance and Disclosures (Advances in Environmental Accounting & Management, Vol. 4), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 161-177.



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