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Stakeholders’ perspectives on the role of regulatory reform in integrated reporting

Stubbs, Wendy and Higgins, Colin 2015, Stakeholders’ perspectives on the role of regulatory reform in integrated reporting, Journal of business ethics, vol. In press, pp. 1-20, doi: 10.1007/s10551-015-2954-0.

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Title Stakeholders’ perspectives on the role of regulatory reform in integrated reporting
Author(s) Stubbs, Wendy
Higgins, ColinORCID iD for Higgins, Colin
Journal name Journal of business ethics
Volume number In press
Start page 1
End page 20
Total pages 20
Publisher Springer
Place of publication New York, N. Y.
Publication date 2015
ISSN 0167-4544
Keyword(s) integrated reporting
Sustainability reporting
Voluntary reporting
Mandatory reporting
Reporting frameworks
Reporting standards
Summary This paper reports on an exploratory study of the preferences of users of non-financial reporting for regulatory or voluntary approaches to integrated reporting (IR). While it is well known that companies prefer voluntary approaches to non-financial reporting, considerably less is known about the preferences of the users of non-financial information. IR is the latest development in attempts over 30 or more years to broaden organisational non-financial reporting and accountability to include the wider social and environmental impacts of business. It promises to provide a more cohesive and efficient approach to corporate reporting by bringing together financial information, operational data and sustainability information to focus only on material issues that impact an organisation’s ability to create value in the short, medium and long term. The study found more support for voluntary approaches to IR as the majority of participants thought that it was too early for regulatory reform. They suggested that IR will become the reporting norm over time if left to market forces as more and more companies adopt the IR practice. Over time IR will be perceived as a legitimate practice, where the actions of integrated reporters are seen as desirable, proper, or appropriate. While there is little appetite for regulatory reform, half of the investors support mandatory IR because, in their experience, voluntary sustainability reporting has not led to more substantive disclosures or increased the quality of reporting. There is also evidence that IR privileges financial value creation over stewardship, inhibiting IR from moving beyond a weak sustainability paradigm.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s10551-015-2954-0
Field of Research 1503 Business And Management
2201 Applied Ethics
1505 Marketing
150303 Corporate Governance and Stakeholder Engagement
Socio Economic Objective 970115 Expanding Knowledge in Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2015, Springer
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Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Department of Management
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