Guest editorial


International Journal of Accounting & Information Management

ISSN: 1834-7649

Article publication date: 20 September 2011



Balachandran, K. and Taticchi, P. (2011), "Guest editorial", International Journal of Accounting & Information Management, Vol. 19 No. 3.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Guest editorial

Article Type: Guest editorial From: International Journal of Accounting and Information Management, Volume 19, Issue 3

About the Guest EditorsBala K.R. Balachandran is a Professor Emeritus of Accounting and Operations Management at New York University Stern School of Business, and Editor in Chief of Journal of Accounting Auditing and Finance (JAAF) and the Senior Consulting Editor of Journal of Applied Management Accounting. He is currently Distinguished Institute Professor of G.D. Goenka World Institute where he advises the management on strategic development of the institute. He is also a Chair Professor of Accounting at Tunghai University in Taiwan and Director of Center for Research on Accounting and Sustainability at the Indian Institute of Finance. He is an organizing member of the Taiwan-Italy Internship Program in its second year of operation and the China-Italy Internship program, for students from Taiwan and China to serve in Italian companies as interns. Professor Balachandran joined Stern in 1979. His primary areas of research include optimal operation of service systems, incentive contracts and mechanisms, transfer pricing determinations, conceptualization of unused capacities and their optimal utilization, warranty contracts, quality enhancement programs and reporting, activity based costing systems, business measurement systems and optimal performance evaluations. In addition, he has contributed to sustainable business development, global warming research and management educational process. Professor Balachandran has written and published more than 75 articles in leading academic journals of economics, accounting, operations research and management science. In addition to serving on the editorial boards of several journals, he has refereed for numerous journals and research funding agencies. He has organized numerous conferences and symposiums for JAAF in New York and Europe. As the organizer of the annual KPMG/JAAF conference in New York, he coordinates with KPMG on their funding for the conference. He is on the staff of Ross Institute of Accounting Research at New York University that develops liaison with Industry.

Dr Paolo Taticchi, MEng, MIBA, PhD is Assistant Professor in Business and Management Engineering at the University of Perugia, Italy. In addition to his position at the University of Perugia, he is currently Visiting Assistant Research Professor at NYU Poly in New York and Associated Lecturer at Bradford University in the UK. In Perugia, he serves as Director of Studies of the Bradford-Perugia MBA in Italy; as Director of the International Summer School program in New York and as Organizer of the Taiwan & China Italy International Internship Programs. He is a consultant for the private and public sectors and is the Coordinator of the Centre for Business Management at the University of Perugia. His research activities focus in the fields of performance measurement and management, business networks and sustainability. He is author and co-author of numerous research papers published in referred journals and conference proceedings, and he has been author and editor of national and international books. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses, as well as MBA, E-MBA and PhD courses internationally.

Sustainability, accounting and reporting

Welcome to this special edition of the International Journal of Accounting and Information Management. In this issue, we have assembled six papers that highlight the emerging impact of the sustainability topic on traditional accounting and reporting research.

Starting from the well-known definition of “sustainable development” introduced by the Burtland Commission in 1983, and the subsequent concept of the “triple bottom line”, sustainability has increasingly attracted the interest of academics, governments, media and industry.

Moreover, the recent world crisis, as well as suspicions on businesses’ environmental and social impacts, has raised the call for sustainability. The recent international meeting in Copenhagen by governmental leaders showed the immense concern of the world body.

With reference to firms, the triple bottom line accounting refers to expanding the traditional measurement and reporting framework to take into account ecological and social performance in addition to financial performance.

The topic of business sustainability is multidisciplinary in nature, and its complexity calls for putting in place a wide variety of research approaches, such as action research, case studies, surveys, model development, etc.

The papers presented in this special issue represent a comprehensive overview of recent advances in this area of accounting and reporting research.

The first paper, by Wei Qian and Roger Burritt from the University of South Australia, is a research paper that investigates the role of leasing in providing a more attractive option than selling and extended producer responsibility (EPR) in helping to close product life-cycle loops, extend the useful life of products and increase environmental benefits.

The second paper, by Alan D. Smith from Robert Morris University, explores the topic of corporate social responsibility (CSR) through the use of a case study comparing sustainability projects’ implementation in large not-for-profit and for-profit companies.

The third paper, by Abigail R. Clarke-Sather, Margot J. Hutchins, Qiong Zhang and John K. Gershenson from Michigan Technological University, proposes a methodology for developing social, environmental and economic indicators for small/medium enterprises by proposing a comparison with the use of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). The paper is supported by a case study.

The fourth paper, by Janine Hogan and Sumit Lodhia from the University of South Australia, uses case study approach and both qualitative and quantitative methods of content analysis for exploring the ways in which a leading Australian public company has used sustainability reporting to respond to reputation risk arising from regulation.

The fifth paper, by Marinilka Barros Kimbro and Zhiyan Cao from Gonzaga University, investigates the extent by which being a signatory company of the UN Global Compact – that reports yearly a report called Communication on Progress (COP) – reduces information risk, and thus leads to better market returns, lower cost of debt and lower cost of equity.

The final paper, by Orhan Akisik and Graham Gal from The University of Massachusetts at Amherst, presents an empirical study examining the relationship of sustainable development in businesses with corporate social responsibility and accounting in 53 developed and emerging economies over the period from 1997 to 2008.

The papers grouped in this special issue confirm that research in accounting and reporting is in continuous evolution, and that sustainability will represent an important element of this evolution.

Kashi Balachandran, Paolo TaticchiGuest Editors

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