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Article

Simone Pizzi, Fabio Caputo and Andrea Venturelli

The aim of the paper is to understand the differences between “talking” and “walking” about sustainable development goals (SDGs) in state-owned enterprises (SOEs)…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the paper is to understand the differences between “talking” and “walking” about sustainable development goals (SDGs) in state-owned enterprises (SOEs). Specifically, the authors have conducted an analysis on 202 entities that operate within the Italian National Healthcare System (INHS) to evaluate the overall degree of transparency in term of contribution to the SDG3.

Design/methodology/approach

The research evaluates the degree of contribution to SDG3 by INHS through the adoption of the theoretical framework proposed by Beck et al. (2010). Specifically, the authors assess the degree of contribution to this goal using an interpretive content analysis that combines the theoretical framework with the 13 targets that composed the SDG3. For the authors’ purposes, they analyze all INHS’s website to evaluate the presence/absence of social reports produced in the periods 2015-2018.

Findings

Although the great contribution to the SDG3, the INHS is characterized by a low degree of accountability. In fact, only 12.21 per cent of INHS’s entities disclosed at least one social report during the observed period. Moreover, the authors’ results denote how the approach of INHS’s entities to social reporting is different both in term of “quality” and “quantity.”

Research limitations/implications

The SOEs play a central role within the Agenda 2030 strategies. However, public managers are less oriented than private managers to adopt non-financial reporting tools. Furthermore, the authors’ results highlight the existence of asymmetric information between SOEs and citizens even if in presence of best practices such as the INHS. In this sense, the adoption of non-financial reports tool to engage in a more effective way with citizens could be a strategic driver for the achievement of highest degree of social legitimacy to operate.

Practical implications

The paper is of use to public managers operating in countries characterized by a high level of contribution to SDGs. Specifically, the authors’ results suggest how the adoption of reporting tools could impact positively in terms of stakeholder’s awareness to SDG themes.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the understanding of the central role covered by academics, practitioners and public sectors to SDGs through the adoption of social reporting tools.

Details

Corporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society, vol. 20 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

Keywords

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Article

Andrea Venturelli, Fabio Caputo, Rossella Leopizzi and Simone Pizzi

According to the Directive 2014/95/EU on non-financial information (NFI), from 2017 onwards, large companies of member states will be required to provide a series of…

Abstract

Purpose

According to the Directive 2014/95/EU on non-financial information (NFI), from 2017 onwards, large companies of member states will be required to provide a series of social, environmental and governance disclosures. This paper, focusing on the evaluation of the quality of NFI in the UK and Italy before the implementation of the EU Directive, aims to investigate which factors affect the quality of NFI in the comparison between the UK and Italy.

Design/methodology/approach

To evaluate the “state of the art” of NFI in corporate social disclosure of British and Italian listed companies, a non-financial score is created, based on specific items concerning the requirements of the EU Directive. To this aim, the authors analyzed the corporate disclosures of 343 large listed companies.

Findings

Findings show that the UK is more compliant than Italy. So, regulation could be important to improve NFI in Italy more than in the UK. The results could represent relevant evidence for European policymakers of the action agenda “emphasizing the importance of national and sub-national CSR policies”.

Originality/value

This research represents a preliminary analysis on the EU Directive and on its potential effects. Moreover, this study strengthens the previous literature on the quality of non-financial disclosure.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

Keywords

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Article

Simone Pizzi, Andrea Venturelli and Fabio Caputo

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the effectiveness of the comply-or-explain principle in the Italian context. In particular, the analysis will evaluate, which…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the effectiveness of the comply-or-explain principle in the Italian context. In particular, the analysis will evaluate, which factor impact on firms' voluntary adoption of this tool to adequate their non-financial reports to the legal requirements of Directive 95/2014/EU.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology consists of two different levels of analysis. The first part is statistical descriptive, and it consists of a rhetorical analysis on the justifications provided by the firms about their omissions to comply with Directive 95/2014/EU. The second part is inferential and its aim is to evaluate, which factors impact on comply-or-explains adoption.

Findings

The findings reveal how the comply-or-explain application in Italy has been characterized by several criticisms. The result highlight how the justifications adopted by the firms is influenced by their sector of activity and omission's type. Moreover, the analysis suggests how the sector of activity and the level of adherence to global reporting initiative influenced the average number of omissions.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations of the research are represented by the focuses on a single country and by the short period of analysis. In this sense, future research could be addressed to the analysis of countries different from Italy. Moreover, accounting scholars could provide further contributions to the political debate through the evolution of the “comply-or-explain” principle’s strategies over the years.

Practical implications

The practical implications connected to the present research are twofold. The first one is represented by the possibility for policymakers to increase the degree of attention about the use of comply-or-explain as legitimization's tool. The second one is represented by the possibility for practitioners to identify a new reporting framework.

Social implications

The social implications are represented by the possibility for stakeholders to evaluate the reliability's degree of the disclosure produced by Italian public interest entities after the implementation of Directive 95/2014/EU.

Originality/value

Despite the growing attention paid by academics regard Directive 95/2014/EU, this is the first attempt to analyze the comply-or-explain from a rhetorical perspective.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

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