Global gender diversity and equality indexes have been developed to promote gender diversity and equality at the country level, but it is difficult to see how those…
Global gender diversity and equality indexes have been developed to promote gender diversity and equality at the country level, but it is difficult to see how those indexes are applied to organizations on a daily basis. The purpose of this study is to examine the application of environmental, social and governance (ESG) measures for gender diversity and equality at the organizational level in a Korean context.
Based on the institutional theory, the authors reviewed ESG measures for gender diversity and equality of women funds in four countries (USA, Canada, UK and Japan) and examined The Women Fund in Korea through document analysis and interviews.
ESG measures in four countries’ women funds mainly assessed the percentage of women in the workforce, on boards and in leadership positions. In The Women Fund, gender diversity indicators consider the ratio of female to male employees, while gender equality indicators take into account gaps of male and female salaries and positions. This study’s impact analysis indicates that the companies invested in by The Women Fund had higher return on assets and return on equity than those without the fund.
Although women funds explored in this study exemplify the use of ESG measures to apply global gender diversity and equality indexes at the organizational level, research is needed to examine ESG measures and women funds and their associations. Possible topics include what needs to be measured in ESG, who should be involved, how ESG measures should be applied, what outcomes of using ESG measures would ensue in organizations and how ESG measures relate to regional and global gender diversity.
In promoting ESG measures that apply global gender diversity and equality at the organizational level, human resource development practitioners, as change agents, can help organizations develop socially responsible and ethical behaviors and transform organizational culture, practice and systems, which may influence organizations’ long-term survival and development as well as financial performance.
As the government’s support and policies guide and drive firms to develop and implement initiatives and programs, the launch and implementation of gender diversity and equality at the organizational level in the form of women funds require a certain level of collaboration between the government and the private sector.
This study on the application of ESG measures for global gender diversity and equality at the organizational level in the form of women funds is timely to engage organizations in dialogue regarding what needs to be done to promote women’s participation and leadership roles in organizations in Korea and other countries.
This paper aims to investigate whether there are relationships among corporate disclosure of environmental, social and governance (ESG) and firms’ operational (ROA)…
This paper aims to investigate whether there are relationships among corporate disclosure of environmental, social and governance (ESG) and firms’ operational (ROA), financial (ROE) and market performance (Tobin’s Q), and if these relationships are positives or negatives or even neutral.
The study sample covers US S&P 500-listed companies during the period 2009 to 2018. Panel regression analysis was used to examine the study hypotheses and achieve the study aims.
The results showed that ESG disclosure positively affects a firms’ performance measures. However, measuring ESG sub-components separately showed that environmental (EVN) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) disclosure is negatively associated with ROA and ROE. EVN and CSR disclosure is positively related to Tobin’s Q. Further, corporate governance (CG) disclosure is positively related to ROA and Tobin’s Q, and negatively related to ROE. More importantly, ESG, CSR, EVN and CG tend to be higher with firms that have high assets and high financial leverage. Furthermore, the higher level of ESG, EVN, CSR and CG disclosure, the higher the ROA and ROE.
The study limns a vision of the role of ESG on firm performance. This study tries to determine whether there are relationships among all ESG disclosure and FP, and if they are positive, negative or even neutral.
This study investigated the influence of institutional environment on the environmental, social and governance (ESG) accounting practices of banks in West Africa. The…
This study investigated the influence of institutional environment on the environmental, social and governance (ESG) accounting practices of banks in West Africa. The purpose of this study is to examine whether the size of an economy and the governance structure of a country is relevant for ESG accounting practice.
The study applied content analysis on 602 annual reports of 67 banks in 5 countries in West Africa. A generalised method of moments (GMM) estimation technique was used for the regression analysis.
The evidence showed that GDP has a positive and insignificant relationship with ESG reporting, suggesting that the size of an economy is not relevant for ESG accounting. The study further found that Corruption Perception Index has a positive and significant relationship with ESG accounting. This result implies that a country’s political environment is germane for ESG accounting. Firm-specific factors, such as firms’ size, value and age have positive and significant relationships with ESG accounting while net profit margin and leverage have negative relationships with ESG accounting. The study concludes that a country’s institutional environment influences the ESG accounting practices of its firms.
The governments of countries in West Africa must lay an enabling political and economic foundation to improve the accounting practices of firms, which is a critical factor for attracting investments.
The study contributes to the ESG accounting literature in developing countries which is found to be scarce.
Purpose – The financial crisis has exposed a behavioral paradox: although asset managers are putting significant effort into meeting institutional pressures to demonstrate…
Purpose – The financial crisis has exposed a behavioral paradox: although asset managers are putting significant effort into meeting institutional pressures to demonstrate transparency and responsible behavior, their actual investment behaviors seem to remain inconsistent with responsible ownership. We seek to understand asset managers’ motivations to use externally defined environment, social, and governance (ESG) information to engage in sustainable investment.
Methodology/approach – We draw on insights from the sensemaking literature, as well as institutional, behavioral, and cognitive theories to shed new light on asset managers’ motivations to demonstrate conformance with ESG criteria.
Findings – The more asset managers demonstrate conformance, the less likely they are to make an effort to integrate sustainability and long-term, return-making concerns in their investment behaviors. As a result of the organization’s decoupling strategy, asset managers who are obliged to justify responsible behavior tend to have a limited sense of responsibility for encouraging long-term changes in corporate behavior.
Practical implications – We argue that calls for greater transparency in investment decisions under the guise of demonstrating conformance to ESG information requirements will not lead to more sustainable investment behavior.
Originality/value – This chapter challenges the assumption in the sustainable investment literature that the common use of ESG criteria enables investors to pressure and empower companies in the long term.
Sustainability reporting has been widely adopted by firms worldwide given stakeholders’ need for more transparency on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues…
Sustainability reporting has been widely adopted by firms worldwide given stakeholders’ need for more transparency on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. This study aims to investigate the relationship between ESG and bank’s operational (return on assets [ROA]), financial (return on equity [ROE]) and market performance (Tobin’s Q) in a group of emerging countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
This study examines 59 banks listed on the stock exchanges of MENA countries over a period of 10 years (2008-2017). Only conventional banks with all data for at least two years are included in the sample. The core independent variable is ESG scores, and the dependent variables are ROA, ROE and Tobin’s Q. This study uses bank- and country-specific control variables to measure the relationship between sustainability reporting and bank’s performance.
The findings from the empirical results demonstrate a significant positive impact of ESG on performance and economic benefits to shareholders. However, the relationship between ESG disclosures varies individually; unlike the majority of published research, the authors found that social performance plays a negative role in determining bank’s profitability and value. Furthermore, the authors present evidence in support of the impact of bank- and country-specific factors in determining bank’s performance.
To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study to investigate the impact of sustainability reporting on banks’ performance in the MENA region. It provides evidence that questions the positive relationship between sustainability reporting and financial measures of performance.
With the increasing understanding of stakeholders on sustainability aspects for the business, companies are nowadays paying more attention to environmental and social…
With the increasing understanding of stakeholders on sustainability aspects for the business, companies are nowadays paying more attention to environmental and social issues. This study aims to examine the relationship between Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) Index and firms’ value. Moreover, this study also examines how the controversy score influences the company’s value. The authors employ a dataset of 1.356 companies from 22 countries in Asia which representing the Asian market from 2014 to 2018. This study shows that ESG index score and controversy score are statistically significant, affecting the firms’ value, measured by Tobin’s Q. From the individual tests, the findings of this study indicate that ESG-environmental, ESG-social, and ESG-governance, individually affect the firms’ value. This study suggests that providing disclosure on ESG aspects is essential, not only to increase company value but also to show the company resilience and sustainability. On the other hand, ESG controversy score surprisingly indicates a positive relationship with the company value. The result implies that controversies provide a positive signal to the investor because controversies could provide a signal to the public of companies’ willingness to have transparency and accountability.
The belief that modern organisations have responsibility for their stakeholders, community and society has existed for many decades (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). In this…
The belief that modern organisations have responsibility for their stakeholders, community and society has existed for many decades (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). In this context, there is increasing demand for the non-financial factors (e.g. corporate social responsibility (CSR), natural and human capitals) from stakeholders for making the appropriate business decision (Eccles & Saltzman, 2011). This information of the organisation is therefore required to not only disclose relevant and reliable information, but also monitor corporate executives.
In the other side, corporation reports are criticised as they do not provide the whole business picture of the way organisations organise financial and non-financial elements to creating value yet. It has ignored or reported just a part of the environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) impact made by an organisation (Flower, 2015). As a consequence, there has been a call for improving firm report on environmental, CSR and corporate governance in particular, and additional factors that can potentially impact on business performance in general.
Recently, various corporation reports related to environmental, social activities and sustainability have been introduced, and integrated reporting (IR) is one of them. IR framework is introduced as a new standard for corporate communication. It is ‘a concise communication about how an organisation’s strategy, governance, performance and prospects lead to the creation of value over the short, medium and long term’. A number of important outcomes are attributed to IR including satisfying the information needs of stakeholders and driving organisational change towards more sustainable outcomes (Eccles & Krzus, 2010); reducing reputational risk and allowing companies to make better financial and non-financial decisions; and helping to break down operational and reporting silos in organisations and improving systems and processes (Stubbs & Higgins, 2012). Since the IR emphasise the integration of financial and non-financial data into one report, it calls for experience and knowledge from not only the board as management role but also accountant as practice role to deal with this emerging issue.
This chapter considers the problem of the link between how to reporting the ESG information, the management role board and practice role of accountants in organisation to successfully embed ESG information into the overall corporation strategy. We identify the issues with the demand of ESG information from stakeholders and the lack of connecting and integrating the environmental and corporate social sustainability information into organisation report. We explore the development of IR and integrated thinking (InTh) and the opportunities for board in integrating ESG information into practices and eliminating the ESG and reputational risks. Finally, we consider how management accountant via adopting IR and practising InTh can act as the important role in providing and delivering the better ESG information to stakeholders.
Purpose – Responsible investor (RI) engagement seeks to change corporate strategic priorities while balancing the financial imperative. This chapter uses…
Purpose – Responsible investor (RI) engagement seeks to change corporate strategic priorities while balancing the financial imperative. This chapter uses an institutional theory framework to explore the tension between financial performance and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues in RI engagement.
Methodology – Discourse of the proponent, supporters and opponents of Australia’s first climate change shareholder resolution – a minority proposal, will be analyzed using framing analysis.
Findings – Framing indicated that the discourse emphasized the dominant financial performance logic while often omitting the ESG logic. One possible explanation is that the process of shareholder proposal nomination and the financial imperative of investment organizations effectively co-opted the engagement.
Research limitations – A case of responsible investment engagement is used to illustrate multiple logics in the investment field. Although there are significant limitations to drawing inferences from a single example, the discussion is relevant to RI support for engagement initiatives such as the UN Principles of Responsible Investment clearinghouse and Carbon Disclosure Project Carbon Action. This chapter argues that attempts to change corporate strategic actions on climate change by RI through engagement will be less effective while the financial performance logic provides relatively more legitimacy to investors.
Practical implications – Integrating the ESG logic with the financial logic is vulnerable to co-optation due to incommensurability. Operationalizing both logics requires establishing a boundary between ESG and financial logics to develop legitimacy.
Social implications – RI engagement on climate change has the potential to be an important part of the social response to the sustainability agenda.
Originality – In applying institutional theory to RI climate change activism this chapter presents original insights into the potential of engagement to effect change.
Purpose – Institutional investors need to move beyond first- and second-generation interpretations of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) (based on negative filters), and also beyond third and fourth generations (based on positive and integrated filters), which are more sophisticated but still limited, and toward a fifth generation of SRI and CSR. A fifth-generation model systematically incorporates critical intangibles, such as human capital analysis, into the Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investment process.
Methodology – This chapter incorporates a literature review and draws on a range of qualitative research and case studies on the current and potential role of regulators to regulate nontraditional measures of value.
Findings – The power of institutional investors is currently based on incomplete information from listed companies on how they create value, yet it rests on superior knowledge and insight into the workings of the companies in which they invest, and is only as strong as the quality of the information it uses to make investment decisions on behalf of clients.
Research implications – More research on the role of human capital analysis, and its regulatory consequences, is required.
Practical implications – Regulators need to act within the context of these fifth-generation models in order to create the environment for more transparent investment recommendations.
Originality of chapter – This chapter contributes a qualitative and conceptual perspective to the debate on the role of regulation beyond the global financial crisis.
Purpose – The purpose of this chapter is to explore the proactive role played by investor relations officers (IROs) in enhancing the quality and delivery of corporate…
Purpose – The purpose of this chapter is to explore the proactive role played by investor relations officers (IROs) in enhancing the quality and delivery of corporate social performance (CSP) information to social responsibility investment (SRI) analysts and investors, thereby improving the link between CSP and corporate financial performance (CFP). The increasing pressures on corporations to produce and communicate CSP information will be described, as well as how the timely and meaningful communication of CSP can improve CFP.
Methodology/approach – Subsequent to a review of relevant literature, three case examples from McDonald’s, Nestlé, and Stora Enso illustrate Hockerts and Moir’s grounded theory framework that suggest how IROs can improve communication of CSP.
Findings – This chapter illustrates three levels of communicating CSP information. First, IROs target SRI investors and respond to ESG inquiries and surveys. At the second level, IROs integrate ESG information into business strategy and financial results. At the third level, IROs actively market CSP and create a two-way proactive dialogue between SRI investors and senior management and the board.
Practical implications – This chapter provides practical examples to improve ESG activities and their communication via the IRO to SRI analysts and investors.
Originality/value of chapter – This chapter contributes to the literature on the CSP–CFP link by illustrating how proactive IROs are improving the CSP information channel to SRI securities analysts and investors. Furthermore, it advances the theory and research concerning the impact of the information channel between IROs and securities analysts behind the CSP–CFP link.