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Book part
Publication date: 28 July 2014

Tineke Lambooy, Rosemarie Hordijk and Willem Bijveld

The authors have examined the developments in law and in practice concerning integrated reporting. An integrated report combines the most material elements of information…

Abstract

Purpose

The authors have examined the developments in law and in practice concerning integrated reporting. An integrated report combines the most material elements of information about corporate performance (re: financial, governance, social and environmental functioning) – currently reported in separate reports – into one coherent whole. The authors first explore the motivation of companies and legislators to introduce integrating reporting. Next, they analyse how integrated reporting can be supported by legislation thereby taking into account the existing regulatory environment.

Methodology/approach

Literature study; desk research, analysing integrated reports; organisation of an international academic conference (30 May 2012 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands).

Findings

EU law needs adjusting in the field of corporate annual reporting. Although integrated reporting is currently being explored by some frontrunners of the business community and is being encouraged by investors, the existing legal framework does not offer any incentive, nor is uniformity and credibility in the reporting of non-financial information stimulated. The law gives scant guidance to companies to that end. The authors argue that amending the mandatory EU framework can support the comparability and reliability of the corporate information. Moreover, a clear and sound EU framework on integrated corporate reporting will assist international companies in their reporting. Presently, companies have to comply with various regulations at an EU and a national level, which do not enhance a holistic view in corporate reporting. The authors provide options on how to do this. They suggest combining EU mandatory corporate reporting rules with the private regulatory reporting regime developed by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).

Research limitations/implications

Focus on EU and Dutch corporate reporting laws, non-legislative frameworks, and corporate practices of frontrunners.

Practical and social implications and originality/value of the chapter

The chapter can provide guidance to policymakers, companies and other stakeholders who want to form an opinion on how to legally support integrated reporting. It addresses important questions, especially concerning how European and domestic legislation could be adjusted in order to (i) reflect the newest insights regarding corporate transparency and (ii) become an adequate framework for companies with added benefits for financiers and investors. Moreover, it reports on the benefits of integrated reporting for reporting companies. The authors argue that integrated reporting can be a critical tool in implementing corporate social responsibility (CSR) in the main corporate strategy of a company.

Details

Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: Perspectives and Practice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-796-2

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 December 2021

Caroline M. Bridges, Julie A. Harrison and David C. Hay

The initial rationale for developing integrated reporting included addressing the failures of traditional reporting to address sustainability issues. Subsequently, the…

Abstract

Purpose

The initial rationale for developing integrated reporting included addressing the failures of traditional reporting to address sustainability issues. Subsequently, the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) modified its stated objectives to emphasise integrated thinking and value creation. There has been debate on whether the IIRC’s process for developing its integrated reporting framework was subject to regulatory capture by the accounting profession (Flower, 2015; Adams, 2015; Thomson, 2015). This paper aims to provide additional evidence on the extent to which this regulatory capture occurred, with an update on current developments.

Design/methodology/approach

Data from interviews with key participants in the integrated reporting framework’s development and the IIRC’s Council and Working Group meeting minutes were analysed to identify to what extent the change in the IIRC’s focus can be explained by regulatory capture theory.

Findings

The findings show that the integrated reporting framework’s development was subject to regulatory capture by accountants. However, the extent of capture was mitigated to some extent by processes adopted in its development. This is consistent with regulatory capture theory.

Originality/value

This paper critically examines the debate on the extent to which the sustainability message has been lost as a result of regulatory capture. It provides an in-depth analysis of the IIRC’s treatment of sustainability which explores the application of regulatory capture theory and examines evidence not considered in previous studies.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 July 2021

Barry Ackers and Susanna Elizabeth Grobbelaar

Despite initially being lauded as a revolutionary approach for companies to account to all stakeholders, the shareholder orientation of the international integrated

Abstract

Purpose

Despite initially being lauded as a revolutionary approach for companies to account to all stakeholders, the shareholder orientation of the international integrated reporting (<IR>) framework gave rise to questions about whether integrated reports would still sufficiently disclose pertinent corporate social responsibility (CSR) information. This paper aims to investigate the extent to which the <IR> framework has impacted the CSR disclosures contained in integrated reports of South African mining companies.

Design/methodology/approach

The study deployed a mixed methods research approach, involving thematic content analysis of the CSR disclosures contained in the integrated reports of mining companies with primary listings on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. The resultant qualitative data were subsequently analysed using a T-test of difference.

Findings

The study observes that the release of the <IR> framework appears to have had a limited impact on the CSR disclosures in the integrated reports of most companies included in the study. However, where significant differences were identified, the CSR disclosures of some companies were positively impacted after the release of the <IR> framework, whilst others were negatively impacted.

Research limitations/implications

As South Africa is acknowledged as a leader in the global <IR> movement, the paper’s observations have global relevance and suggest that the fundamental principles of <IR> should be reconsidered to improve the alignment with stakeholders’ information needs, as originally conceived.

Originality/value

Despite the shareholder orientation of the <IR> framework, the global mining industry is acknowledged as being at the forefront of implementing CSR interventions to mitigate the adverse impacts of their operations on stakeholders, supporting a stakeholder orientation. As the adoption of <IR> continues to gain traction around the world, this paper’s contribution is that it represents one of the few papers to use the global reporting initiative G4 indicators to specifically examine the impact of <IR> framework on the CSR disclosures on the South African mining industry, where both <IR> and CSR reporting are quasi-mandatory disclosure requirements.

Article
Publication date: 2 March 2015

Roger Simnett and Anna Louise Huggins

This paper aims to provide insights into salient issues in the development of the Integrated Reporting (<IR>) Framework, and emerging issues in the implementation of this…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide insights into salient issues in the development of the Integrated Reporting (<IR>) Framework, and emerging issues in the implementation of this Framework, with the aim of identifying opportunities for future research. The International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) has recently produced a reporting framework for the preparation of a concise, user-oriented corporate report which expands the scope of a company’s reporting using a multiple capitals concept and requires a description of a company’s business model, allowing a better communication of its value creation proposition. To gain international acceptance, the market-based benefits of adopting the framework must be demonstrated.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper takes the form of an archival analysis of the responses to the IIRC’s public consultation phases, providing insights into arguments for and against salient aspects of the framework, and identifying issues that would benefit from future research.

Findings

Identifying issues that arose during the framework preparation, this paper identifies a range of future research opportunities and outlines the research approaches by which academics can assess the costs and benefits of companies reporting in accordance with the <IR> Framework and assuring this information.

Research limitations/implications

Research opportunities associated with the International <IR>) Framework and associated assurance are identified.

Practical implications

This paper provides insights and details of the process of adoption of <IR> and has implications for adopters and assurance providers of integrated reports, standard setters and regulators. The development of a sophisticated business case informed by rigorous research will be critical to the further uptake of <IR>.

Social implications

Research opportunities identified include the expansion of the <IR> Framework to reporting entities other than corporations, including government and not-for-profit organisations, as well as measurement and assurance of a broader array of capitals, including social capital.

Originality/value

The paper identifies <IR> research opportunities from an archival analysis of the responses to the IIRC’s public consultation phases, providing insights into arguments for and against salient aspects of the framework that would benefit from future research.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 August 2018

Zihan Liu, Christine Jubb and Subhash Abhayawansa

The integrated reports published by companies vary significantly in quality in spite of them claiming to be compliant with the integrated reporting (IR) Framework issued…

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Abstract

Purpose

The integrated reports published by companies vary significantly in quality in spite of them claiming to be compliant with the integrated reporting (IR) Framework issued by the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC). The purpose of this paper is to develop and apply a normative benchmark against which compliance with the IR Framework, and the extent to which integrated reports make visible how organisations create value, can be evaluated.

Design/methodology/approach

The three pillars of the IR Framework – Capitals, Content Elements and the Guiding Principles – are operationalised by the way of a set of disclosure items that capture the extent to which they manifest within integrated reports. The created disclosure index is applied to analyse reports of five companies that are expected to be superior integrated reporters.

Findings

The normative benchmark that was created to operationalise the IR Framework identifies a vast amount of potentially communicable information and various degrees to which information may be disclosed. The integrated reports analysed differ significantly in the extent to which value-creation stories are made visible, despite some of the companies promoting to have actively engaged with IR as participants of the IIRC Pilot Program Business Network. All selected companies performed poorly in comparison to the normative benchmark.

Originality/value

This paper is the first to provide a comprehensive normative benchmark for analysing and evaluating compliance with the IR Framework and the extent to which integrated reports make visible how organisations create value.

Article
Publication date: 7 June 2018

Merve Kılıç and Cemil Kuzey

This paper aims to investigate the adherence level of current company reports to the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) integrated reporting framework

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the adherence level of current company reports to the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) integrated reporting framework through analysis of whether and to what extent those reports include the content elements of this framework. This study also aims to examine the impact of corporate sustainability characteristics on the adherence level of current company reports to the integrated reporting framework.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample for this research comprises the non-financial companies which were listed on Borsa Istanbul, the Turkish stock exchange, as of 31 December 2015. The authors constructed a disclosure index based on the content elements of the IIRC reporting framework. They then measured the integrated reporting disclosure score (IRS) of each company through a manual content analysis of its annual reports and stand-alone sustainability reports. To test the hypotheses, the authors performed a number of statistical analyses.

Findings

The authors determined that current company reports mainly present generic risks rather than company-specific; provide positive information while dismissing negative information; present financial and non-financial initiatives separately; lack a strategic focus; and include backward-looking information rather than forward-looking information. Consistent with the predictions, the authors found that the IRS is significantly and positively associated with sustainability reporting, Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) adoption, sustainability index listing and the presence of a sustainability committee.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the literature by enhancing the understanding of integrated reporting practices through the application of a checklist based upon the IIRC integrated reporting framework. Further, this study contributes to the literature by evaluating the impact of corporate sustainability characteristics on IRS.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 July 2016

Reijo Savolainen

The purpose of this paper is to elaborate the picture of the nature of integrated models for information behaviour from the perspective of conceptual growth in this field…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to elaborate the picture of the nature of integrated models for information behaviour from the perspective of conceptual growth in this field of study.

Design/methodology/approach

Conceptual analysis focusing on the ways in which the researchers have developed integrated models. The study concentrates on seven key models proposed by Bates, Choo and associates, Godbold, Robson and Robinson, and Wilson.

Findings

Researchers have employed four main approaches to develop integrated models. First, such frameworks are based on the juxtaposition of individual models. Second, integrated models are built by cross-tabulating the components of diverse models. Third, such models are constructed by relating similar components of individual models. Finally, integrated models are built by incorporating components taken from diverse frameworks. The integrated models have contributed to conceptual growth in three major ways: first, by integrating formerly separate parts of knowledge; second, by generalizing and explaining lower abstraction-level knowledge through higher level constructs; and third, by expanding knowledge by identifying new characteristics of the object of study.

Research limitations/implications

The findings are based on the comparison of seven models only. The integrated frameworks of information retrieval were excluded from the study.

Originality/value

The study pioneers by providing an in-depth analysis the nature of integrated models for information behaviour. The findings contribute to the identification of the key factors of information behaviour.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 72 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 December 2017

Pei-Chi Kelly Hsiao and Martin Kelly

Integrated reporting (IR) aims to improve the quality of information available to capital providers. While IR is associated with decreases in investor uncertainty and…

1778

Abstract

Purpose

Integrated reporting (IR) aims to improve the quality of information available to capital providers. While IR is associated with decreases in investor uncertainty and increases in firm value, it is unclear how IR information directly influences investment decisions. This paper aims to investigate the investment considerations of Taiwanese investors and their initial impressions of the International Integrated Reporting Framework (IIRC Framework). In doing so, this study examines the relationships between investment considerations and the IIRC Framework’s concepts.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with 16 investors in Taiwan. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data collected.

Findings

In addition to economic and financial outlook, competitive advantages and ownership structure, Taiwanese investors emphasise management credibility as an important factor that influences investment decisions. Investors are reliant on private information sources and quantitative data. Sustainability disclosures and sustainability performance beyond legal requirements are often not considered. Taiwanese investors lack awareness of the IIRC Framework and are sceptical about the premise that integrated reports can provide information material to investment appraisal. The assertion that integrated reports reduce information asymmetry and influence investment decisions has to be treated with caution.

Research limitations/implications

Self-selection bias and a potential lack of transferability in the findings are issues inherent in the research method and sample used.

Practical implications

IR information needs to be frequently updated rather than disclosed in a periodic report. Furthermore, integrated reports need to demonstrate a direct link between non-financial performance and financial value creation.

Social implications

Mandating the supply of integrated reports is unlikely to influence investors’ capital allocation decisions unless investor demand is a driver of the regulation.

Originality/value

This study is one of the few to investigate IR from the investor’s perspective. Observations from this preliminary study warrant further investigations into the relevance of IR to investment communities globally.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 12 March 2020

Sergio Paternostro

There are still many different theoretical approaches and practical interpretations about what an integrated report is. Starting from this premise, the overall purpose of…

Abstract

There are still many different theoretical approaches and practical interpretations about what an integrated report is. Starting from this premise, the overall purpose of this chapter is to critically analyze the relationship between integrated reporting (IR) and social/sustainability disclosure. Indeed, although some scholars considered IR as a tool to improve the sustainability approach of the companies allowing to disclose more relevant social information, others are more critical about the potentiality of IR to improve social disclosure. Therefore, the general research question is: Is there a natural link between IR and social disclosure (true love) or is the IR a practice to “normalize” the social disclosure and accounting (forced marriage)?

In the attempt to provide a preliminary answer to the research question, the chapter analyzes what is the approach of three categories: (1) academics; (2) soft-regulators; and (3) companies. From the methodological point of view, a mixed method of analysis has been adopted.

From the analysis of the three different points of view, IR can be considered as a “contested concept” because of the heterogeneous and sometimes conflicting interpretations and implementation that are done on this type of report. This leads to relevant theoretical and practical implications.

Details

Non-Financial Disclosure and Integrated Reporting: Practices and Critical Issues
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-964-4

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 October 2017

Hugo A. Macias and Angelica Farfan-Lievano

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the implementation of the integrated reporting (IR) framework in a group of Colombian enterprises.

2921

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the implementation of the integrated reporting (IR) framework in a group of Colombian enterprises.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a multiple-case study in six enterprises that use the IR framework. The selected enterprises, all of which were located in either Bogota or Medellin, were Argos, EEB, EPM, ISA, Nutresa and Ocensa. The authors conducted individual interviews of reporters and performed a documentary analysis.

Findings

The few Colombian firms that use the IR framework all have ambitious expansion goals in the medium term. The main reason for the adoption of the IR framework in these firms is that it facilitates access to resources from new foreign investors.

Research limitations/implications

Since the framework was published recently, only a few Colombian firms follow it, and several of them do not apply all of its components. In the future, there will be more reports and a higher level of framework application.

Practical implications

In the firms studied, the IR framework is an important tool to support the search strategies of new sources of financial capital.

Social implications

If the use of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) framework were to diminish the application of the GRI, firms would be less likely to evaluate the impact of their activities on numerous stakeholders (other than shareholders).

Originality/value

This is the first Colombian study of IR to include both documentary analysis and personal interviews.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. 25 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

Keywords

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