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Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2014

Massimo Contrafatto

This article focuses on the lesser-used notion of stewardship and stewardship-ism. Stewardship is a concept that has inspired the activities of several organizations whose…

Abstract

This article focuses on the lesser-used notion of stewardship and stewardship-ism. Stewardship is a concept that has inspired the activities of several organizations whose mission is to preserve, protect and maintain natural, social and economic assets for the benefit of stakeholders and communities. As observed by Contrafatto and Bebbington (2013), stewardship has some resonance with current policy agendas that attend to the issues related to sustainable development, corporate social responsibility and accountability. Most of the existing works on stewardship provide several perspectives with the focus being either on normative foundations of stewardship or on its organizational and managerial implications. In particular, the stewardship-related literature offers a range of conceptions and approaches ranking from a relatively narrow view of the resources, sources and time frame of stewardship to very broad specification. In this article, the management, organization and accounting literature is analysed to propose a map of current theorizing on stewardship. In particular, drawing on the methodological approach adopted by Lowndes (1996), four theoretical vignettes have been proposed to illustrate different variants and approaches in stewardship framework. Each vignette provides a set of conceptual constructs, ideas and views to understand stewardship and stewardship-inspired behaviour. The variety of approaches/perspectives on stewardship, as illustrated from the analysis undertaken in this article, provides an opportunity for deeper theory-based understanding of social and organizational dynamics. In particular, it is argued that the richness of perspectives, focus and levels of analysis could offer insights to conceptualize, see and make sense of some of the challenges that are posed by a desire for promoting transition towards more sustainable ways of organizing our society.

Details

Accountability and Social Accounting for Social and Non-Profit Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-004-9

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Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2014

Ericka Costa, Lee D. Parker and Michele Andreaus

Within the accounting discipline and its literature, attention to the role of social and non-profit organizations has been growing, particularly with respect to issues of…

Abstract

Within the accounting discipline and its literature, attention to the role of social and non-profit organizations has been growing, particularly with respect to issues of accountability and social accounting. In response, the aim of this introductory article is to present the background for the book by highlighting (i) the relevance and rise of the non-profit sector worldwide, (ii) the limitations of the conventional accounting framework when applied/transposed to NPOs and (iii) the ‘social accounting project’ for NPOs. The article presents analysis and critique based on a literature review of the accountability framework for NPOs. After presenting key worldwide statistics regarding the growing non-profit sector, the article points out the skepticism regarding the adoption of traditional accounting principles and frameworks for NPOs. The article offers both an examination of how to improve the accounting system for NPOs and a discussion of the benefits emerging from the social and environmental accounting and reporting models. ‘The social accounting project’ for NPOs is presented as a pathway towards these innovative practices increasing organizational transparency. This article and the book overall provide new contributions to the research literature, fostering synergies among financial accounting and social accounting scholars engaging with the NPO subject area. Moreover it brings together studies from a range of disciplines, such as financial accounting, social accounting, economics, management, and third-sector studies. This cross-disciplinary approach offers a major contribution to our developing knowledge in this field.

Details

Accountability and Social Accounting for Social and Non-Profit Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-004-9

Keywords

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