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All That Glitters Is Not Gold: An exploratory study into converging and diverging stakeholders perceptions of sustainability reporting

van de Wouw, Seline LU and Bremer, Natali LU (2020) IBUH19 20201
Department of Business Administration
Abstract
Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to critically explore how a regulatory, community and organizational stakeholder perceive their role in the context of sustainability reporting as well as identify convergence and divergence between these different stakeholder perceptions.

Methodology: We chose a qualitative-abductive approach to our case study of sustainability reporting by interviewing three stakeholders representing three different stakeholder perspectives. The stakeholders were a business law professor and former EU lawyer representing the EU Dir 2014/95, an employee at the Global Reporting Initiative and a co- founder and CEO of a sustainability reporting software company. The data was transcribed and
analyzed thematically,... (More)
Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to critically explore how a regulatory, community and organizational stakeholder perceive their role in the context of sustainability reporting as well as identify convergence and divergence between these different stakeholder perceptions.

Methodology: We chose a qualitative-abductive approach to our case study of sustainability reporting by interviewing three stakeholders representing three different stakeholder perspectives. The stakeholders were a business law professor and former EU lawyer representing the EU Dir 2014/95, an employee at the Global Reporting Initiative and a co- founder and CEO of a sustainability reporting software company. The data was transcribed and
analyzed thematically, as per Braun and Clarke (2006).

Conceptual Framework: The conceptual framework of this thesis is based on stakeholder theory, specifically Henriques and Sadorsky’s (1999) stakeholder groups and Mitchell, Wood and Agle’s (1997) stakeholder salience model combined with institutional theory, specifically DiMaggio and Powell’s (1983) isomorphic pressures.
Thematic analysis: In terms of the divergence and convergence of perceptions amongst the interviewed stakeholders four themes were identified from the data: (1) the stakeholders’ role in sustainability reporting, (2) the EU Dir 2014/95, (3) one unified system and (4) quality of sustainability reporting.

Conclusions: This thesis found that there is significant divergence in stakeholder perceptions of sustainability reporting, which leads to sustainability reporting remaining an unsolved puzzle. Sustainability reporting is still a highly criticized phenomenon, despite rapid developments in legislation and worldwide adoption of the practice. The major findings
demonstrate that a reason for sustainability reporting remaining a highly controversial phenomenon, and an unsolved puzzle, might be the contradictory perspectives of regulatory, community and organizational stakeholders. (Less)
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author
van de Wouw, Seline LU and Bremer, Natali LU
supervisor
organization
course
IBUH19 20201
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
Sustainability reporting, EU Dir 2014/95, Global Reporting Initiative, Stakeholder theory, Stakeholder salience, Institutional theory, Isomorphic pressures, Normativity
language
English
id
9019662
date added to LUP
2020-06-23 14:32:41
date last changed
2020-06-23 14:32:41
@misc{9019662,
  abstract     = {Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to critically explore how a regulatory, community and organizational stakeholder perceive their role in the context of sustainability reporting as well as identify convergence and divergence between these different stakeholder perceptions. 

Methodology: We chose a qualitative-abductive approach to our case study of sustainability reporting by interviewing three stakeholders representing three different stakeholder perspectives. The stakeholders were a business law professor and former EU lawyer representing the EU Dir 2014/95, an employee at the Global Reporting Initiative and a co- founder and CEO of a sustainability reporting software company. The data was transcribed and
analyzed thematically, as per Braun and Clarke (2006).

Conceptual Framework: The conceptual framework of this thesis is based on stakeholder theory, specifically Henriques and Sadorsky’s (1999) stakeholder groups and Mitchell, Wood and Agle’s (1997) stakeholder salience model combined with institutional theory, specifically DiMaggio and Powell’s (1983) isomorphic pressures.
Thematic analysis: In terms of the divergence and convergence of perceptions amongst the interviewed stakeholders four themes were identified from the data: (1) the stakeholders’ role in sustainability reporting, (2) the EU Dir 2014/95, (3) one unified system and (4) quality of sustainability reporting.

Conclusions: This thesis found that there is significant divergence in stakeholder perceptions of sustainability reporting, which leads to sustainability reporting remaining an unsolved puzzle. Sustainability reporting is still a highly criticized phenomenon, despite rapid developments in legislation and worldwide adoption of the practice. The major findings
demonstrate that a reason for sustainability reporting remaining a highly controversial phenomenon, and an unsolved puzzle, might be the contradictory perspectives of regulatory, community and organizational stakeholders.},
  author       = {van de Wouw, Seline and Bremer, Natali},
  keyword      = {Sustainability reporting,EU Dir 2014/95,Global Reporting Initiative,Stakeholder theory,Stakeholder salience,Institutional theory,Isomorphic pressures,Normativity},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {All That Glitters Is Not Gold: An exploratory study into converging and diverging stakeholders perceptions of sustainability reporting},
  year         = {2020},
}