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Article
Publication date: 5 October 2021

Renato Garzón- Jiménez and Ana Zorio-Grima

The objective of this paper is to analyze in an international setting the relationship between environmental disclosures, carbon emissions and gender equality on the board of…

Abstract

Purpose

The objective of this paper is to analyze in an international setting the relationship between environmental disclosures, carbon emissions and gender equality on the board of directors with the cost of equity (CoE) in the food and beverage sector.

Design/methodology/approach

The study sample includes 142 listed firms and 1,562 firm-observations from 35 developed and developing countries between 2009 and 2019. The authors implement a fixed-effects regression model to contrast the impact of the three sustainable variables of interest on the CoE.

Findings

The results of this study indicate that firms in the food and beverage industry benefit from a lower CoE due to better environmental disclosures and gender equality. On the other hand, carbon intensive firms are penalized with higher equity costs.

Originality/value

This study expands prior research on the effects of sustainable behavior on the CoE in the food and beverage industry by taking into account additional sustainability variables and a greater number of observations, both from developed and from developing countries.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 124 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 December 2017

Ana Zorio-Grima, Laura Sierra-García and Maria A. Garcia-Benau

The purpose of this research is to identify the combinations of factors leading to experience in sustainability reporting by Spanish public universities.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to identify the combinations of factors leading to experience in sustainability reporting by Spanish public universities.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a sample of 49 public universities in Spain, this paper identifies the combinations of factors on innovation profile, political and internal factors that explain the different degree of corporate social reporting experience with fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis.

Findings

The study’s findings are a contribution to existing literature as the results obtained point out three different configurations leading to this expertise, with a combination of different conditions based on innovation profile, political and internal factors. Also, the results reveal new characteristics of sustainable development strategies by universities, such as devoting a specific sustainability reporting section in the university website, creating a sustainability body in the university structure or submitting the sustainability report to external assurance.

Research limitations/implications

This study refers only to Spanish public universities. In the future, new studies can enlarge the sample and analyse country effects and impact of public versus private status of universities on sustainability reporting strategies.

Practical implications

The study’s findings are important for university community, regulators and other stakeholders to start considering the need to somehow promote further sustainability reporting and assurance practices by universities, especially in a context of budget restrictions.

Originality/value

This paper opens up a new line of research on sustainability experience using an innovative methodology (fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis) useful with small sample sizes, and provides a complete picture of sustainability reporting by Spanish public universities.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 19 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 March 2021

Carmen Cordova, Ana Zorio-Grima and Paloma Merello

This paper aims to explore the driving forces for having carbon reporting and carbon reduction management strategies in emerging and developing countries.

1928

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the driving forces for having carbon reporting and carbon reduction management strategies in emerging and developing countries.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology employed uses logit and linear panel data models and generalized moments method, to avoid endogeneity problems.

Findings

The results show that the carbon reporting decision is positively related to being located in Africa or America (as opposed to Asia), publishing a sustainability report and having certain corporate governance (CG) attributes such as a corporate social responsibility (CSR) committee, larger board size and an executive compensation policy based on environmental and social performance. Regarding the driving forces leading to a reduction of carbon emissions, no evidence is obtained on the effect of the variables considered.

Practical implications

The evidence obtained is valuable, as it can help standard-setters in these geographical areas to promote actions in the field of CG to increase transparency. Nonetheless, additional measures to disclosure should be needed in the future to help decrease carbon emissions more effectively.

Social implications

Raising awareness amongst companies helps mimetic isomorphism take place so that efforts can be made to report levels of pollution in an initial phase, which hopefully in the future may be managed to try to keep a decreasing path. Therefore, implications of this research are crucial for emerging and developing countries, as they are especially vulnerable to climate change.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first paper to look into this phenomenon in emerging and developing countries from Asia, Africa and America. This contribution is unique as this research shows that location, publication of a sustainability report together with some CG attributes are drivers for carbon transparency.

Details

Corporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 March 2017

Yaismir Adriana Rivera-Arrubla, Ana Zorio-Grima and María A. García-Benau

This paper aims to look into the new corporate reporting phenomenon, the so-called integrated reporting (IR), so as to assess the information level provided, identify trends and…

2929

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to look into the new corporate reporting phenomenon, the so-called integrated reporting (IR), so as to assess the information level provided, identify trends and explore its determining factors.

Design/methodology/approach

This study looks into the IR disclosure level of the annual reports published by 91 companies in the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC)’s pilot programme. The authors’ empirical research focuses on four areas: the guiding principles of connectivity and materiality, as well as two content elements: the business model and governance. Following extant research on voluntary disclosure, a disclosure index is proposed and some hypotheses are put forward on its connection with some corporate variables.

Findings

The results point out that the disclosure levels of the IRs published by IIRC’s pilot programme members reach medium levels of disclosure. According to the authors’ index, the level of disclosure is significantly associated with the specific environment of organizations (i.e. region and industry), assurance of the report and publication in the IIRC website.

Originality/value

This study makes a relevant contribution, as it presents an innovative IR disclosure index and sheds some light on the disclosure practices of early adopters of IR. This evidence is valuable in understanding the trends in this field and could help the IIRC and other standard setters with a view to improving sustainable development and reporting.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 15 March 2021

Renato Garzón Jiménez and Ana Zorio-Grima

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) actions are expected to reduce information asymmetries and increase legitimacy among the stakeholders of the company, which consequently…

Abstract

Purpose

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) actions are expected to reduce information asymmetries and increase legitimacy among the stakeholders of the company, which consequently should have a positive impact on the financial conditions of the firm. Hence, the objective of this paper is to find empirical evidence on the negative relationship between sustainable behavior and the cost of equity, in the specific context of Latin America. To address this issue, some proxies and moderating variables for sustainability are used in our study.

Design/methodology/approach

The regression model considers a sample with 252 publicly trading firms and 2,772 firm-year observations, from 2008 to 2018. The generalized method of moments is used to avoid endogeneity problems.

Findings

The study finds evidence that firms with higher environmental, social and governance activities disclosed by sustainability reports and assured by external providers decrease their cost of equity, especially if they are in an integrated market as MILA. This finding confirms that agency conflicts between firm's management and stakeholders diminish with higher CSR transparency, leading to a lower cost of capital.

Originality/value

Our research is unique and valuable as, to our knowledge, it is the first study to analyze the impact of sustainable behavior and the cost of equity from companies operating in Latin America.

Propósito

Las actividades de Responsabilidad Social Empresarial permiten disminuir asimetrías de información e incrementar la legitimidad ante los stakeholders de una empresa, generando impactos positivos financieros para la misma. De hecho, el objetivo del artículo es medir la relación entre el comportamiento sostenible y el Costo de Capital en el contexto empresarial latinoamericano. Para ello, consideramos algunas variables proxy y moderadoras sustentables en nuestro estudio.

Diseño/Metodología/Enfoque

El modelo considera una muestra de 252 empresas cotizadas y 2772 observaciones que abarcan el período de 2008 a 2018. Se implementa el Modelo Generalizado de Momentos para evitar problemas de endogeneidad.

Resultados

Los autores evidencian que empresas con altos niveles de divulgación ambiental, social y gobernanza corporativa a través de reportes de sostenibilidad y asegurados por proveedores externos disminuyen el Costo de Capital, especialmente si cotizan en un mercado integrado como el MILA. Estos hallazgos confirman que se reduce la asimetría de información entre la gerencia y los stakeholders, dado que incrementa la transparencia mediante la Responsabilidad Social Corporativa y ello conduce a un menor Costo de Capital.

Originalidad/Valor

Nuestro estudio es único dado que, hasta la fecha, es el primer estudio que analiza el impacto de la divulgación voluntaria de RSE y Costo de Capital de empresas que operan en Latinoamérica.

Details

Academia Revista Latinoamericana de Administración, vol. 34 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1012-8255

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 December 2021

Andreea Hancu-Budui and Ana Zorio-Grima

Supreme audit institutions (SAIs) examine and supervise the activity of public institutions. The study aims at contributing to the existing literature on public sector audit by…

Abstract

Purpose

Supreme audit institutions (SAIs) examine and supervise the activity of public institutions. The study aims at contributing to the existing literature on public sector audit by providing a classification of 29 European SAIs – 28 national SAIs and the European Court of Auditors (ECA) – based on a broad range of attributes varying from the SAIs' environment to its structure, activity, resources or transparency.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors apply quantitative methodology for clustering by means of multidimensional scaling and regressive ordinary least square (OLS) and logistic models.

Findings

The authors' results show that SAIs from veteran EU member states (MSs) are more similar amongst them and the same applies to SAIs from Nordic countries, Baltic countries, Western Mediterranean countries and Eastern countries. The authors also perform additional analysis focussing on currently relevant issues such as gender equality, age, environment or the sustainable development goals (SDGs), concluding that the younger the institutions' staff, the more transparent the institutions are. The authors also find that more transparent SAIs report on environmental audits, more prone to cover the SDGs in their audits.

Research limitations/implications

The research is limited in purpose and scope because data cover only Europe. Given the limited number of observations (29), it does not have prospective purposes but only explanatory ones. The authors' findings are interesting for researchers because they offer original insights on public audit in Europe and cover matters of current interest such as environment, transparency or gender equality.

Practical implications

The research is also of interest for public auditors because it offers them information that may help them improve their activity and find institutional synergies, as the dataset is available to public auditors.

Social implications

From a social view point, the paper shows that public auditors perform work on topics of interest for the citizens.

Originality/value

The dataset compiled for the research offers extensive data and a wide variety of attributes defining European SAIs and may offer future opportunities for research from different perspectives.

Details

Journal of Public Budgeting, Accounting & Financial Management, vol. 35 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1096-3367

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 June 2019

Ana Zorio-Grima and Pedro Carmona

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether audit firms use transparency reports (TRs) as a tool to standardize their brand image or whether the semantic and content analysis…

681

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether audit firms use transparency reports (TRs) as a tool to standardize their brand image or whether the semantic and content analysis in these reports indicates a higher importance of country effects.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample includes 28 TRs published in English by the Big-4 audit firms from five EU countries (the UK, Ireland, Luxemburg, Hungary and Malta), as well as in the USA and Australia.

Findings

Using content analysis, this research finds that there is variation in the language used in TRs both across audit firms and jurisdictions. Most TRs from different countries of the same firm tend to be clustered, suggesting that audit firms use transparency reporting as a strategy to differentiate themselves from their competitors. In fact, EY and KPMG seem to have more standardized internal procedures and standardized information. Regarding country effects, the results indicate that TRs in the UK are longer and show more detailed information.

Originality/value

Overall, this research is innovative in the sense that it applies a new methodological approach to an emerging topic such as audit transparency reporting. It identifies emerging topics of voluntary disclosure, such as financial data of the firm, gender and ethnic origin of employees, community involvement or sanctions, among other topics of interest which might be explored in detail by future research to understand the construction of the profession.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 34 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 June 2021

Ahmed Farouk Radwan and Engy M. Abou Sreea Khalil

This paper aims to assess the level of knowledge, attitudes and practices adopted among University of Sharjah (UOS) students toward sustainability efforts done by their university.

1091

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to assess the level of knowledge, attitudes and practices adopted among University of Sharjah (UOS) students toward sustainability efforts done by their university.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey was emailed to students with the assistance of the UOS Sustainability Office. The survey consisted of four sections assessing knowledge, attitudes, practices and preferred media to obtain sustainability information. A total of 200 responses from male and female students, representing 4 levels of study in sciences and humanities colleges, were received. Research data is analyzed using the IBM SPSS Statistics (version 26). For assessing knowledge, eight items were developed to measure if the student knew about the university’s projects and activities in the field of sustainability. For assessing attitudes, six items were developed to indicate the level of agreement or disagreement toward main sustainability issues. For assessing practices, ten items were developed to measure the frequency of acting in a sustainable manner.

Findings

Survey results showed an advanced level of basic knowledge among university students regarding the programs and activities conducted by UOS, and a positive attitude toward these efforts and toward the importance of supporting sustainable practices. Most of the participating students disagreed with limiting the use of cars on campus – this may be because of a cultural aspect among young people in the Emirati society, who consider driving cars as an essential part of their daily life. Most students also indicated that they care about the behavior that supports sustainability in the university environment, such as rationalizing water consumption and using environment friendly products.

Research limitations/implications

The study’s limitations are that it was applied to one university – UOS. The sample of the online survey was only 200 students from undergraduate students. Different universities may have their own sets of different environmental approaches, and because of this reason, university students may exhibit different levels of knowledge, attitude and practice toward sustainability in contrast to the findings from this study.

Practical implications

Findings from this research can give decision-makers a good picture of the university’s performance in accomplishing sustainability. The authors recommend that UOS sustainability communication programs should be more comprehensive, and not only limited to protecting the environment that some students perceive as the primary aspect of sustainability. These efforts must address all economic and social aspects emphasized by the United Arab Emirates 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the current study is considered one of the first studies addressing sustainability efforts in Emirati universities and seeking to assess the level of student knowledge, attitudes and practices toward sustainability issues in the country. The study is crucial in providing better insights such as the level of knowledge, attitude and practices toward UOS sustainability performance. As found in this study, even with sufficient knowledge, students still lack the drive to convert them into actions. So, future research could investigate deeper into the barriers of converting sustainable knowledge and attitudes into practices. The results represent an added value to the research literature concerned with sustainability issues in the Arab world and the Middle East region. This paper will also contribute to the sustainability literature that will be benefited by other various organizations.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 22 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 17 May 2021

Aymen Sajjad, Masahiro Hosoda and Hitomi Toyosaki

639

Abstract

Details

Corporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

Content available
Article
Publication date: 20 February 2017

Abstract

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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