Online from: 1988
|Title:||Revisiting the relation between environmental performance and environmental disclosure: an empirical analysis|
|Author(s):||Clarkson P M, Li Y, Richardson G D, Vasvari F P|
|Journal:||Accounting, Organizations and Society, May/Jul 2008, Volume: 33 Issue: 4 pp.303-327 (25 pages)|
|Keywords:||Accounting Research, Disclosure, Environmental Management, Usa|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|Reference:||37AP368 (Permanent URL)|
Design/methodology/approach - Reviews previous research, which has produced conflicting results, develops hypotheses and tests them on data for 191 firms from the five most polluting US industries. Creates a content analysis index based on the global reporting initiative guidelines and an econometric model; and explains the methodology.
Findings - Environmental performance was positively associated with levels of discretionary environmental disclosure in the firms' 2003 environmental and social reports and/or related web disclosures. Results were robust and consistent with economics-based theory on voluntary disclosure although socio-political theories help to explain some patterns of disclosure, e.g. firms with unfavourable prior year publicity are more likely to make 'soft' environmental claims which are hard to verify but help to provide legitimacy.
Research limitations/implications - Calls for further disclosure research on what is being said: not just levels.
Originality/value - Tests only voluntary disclosures (not mandatory reports), develops a new content analysis index and finds support for two different theories.