GRI Conference - 27 May - Perego - Assurance Of Sustainability Reporting

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GRI Conference - 27 May - Perego - Assurance Of Sustainability Reporting

  1. 1. Trends in Sustainability Assurance Paolo Perego Department of Accounting Rotterdam School of Management Erasmus University Amsterdam GRI Conference 2010 - Thursday 27 May
  2. 2. Trend analysis (1) <ul><li>Panel data from a sample of Fortune G250 in the period 1999-2008 ( N=212 ). </li></ul><ul><li>Adoption of sustainability assurance statements: </li></ul>
  3. 3. Trend analysis (2) <ul><li>Diffusion of sustainability assurance statements: </li></ul><ul><li>Consistent early adopters: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bayer, BHP Billiton, BP, BT, Enel, Eni, Ing Group, Novartis, Philips, Shell, Statoil, Unilever </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Trend analysis (3) <ul><li>Diffusion per country: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Japan 39 (22%) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>United Kingdom 29 (16%) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Germany 18 (10%) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Netherlands 15 (8.3%) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>United States 12 (6.7%) </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Assurance providers (1) <ul><li>Four categories: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Accountants (Big-4 and other accounting firms) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultants ( Broader and Specialist consultancies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Certification bodies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Others (NGOs, Stakeholder panels, Academic institutions, individuals) </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Assurance providers (2) <ul><li>Assurors per year: </li></ul>
  7. 7. Assurance standards
  8. 8. Assurance standards and assurors <ul><li>Most frequent combinations for accountants: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ISAE 3000 + GRI ( N=10 ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ISAE 3000 ( N=9 ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 + GRI ( N=5 ) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Most frequent combination for specialists and certification bodies: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 + GRI ( N=5 ) </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Quality of assurance statements (1) <ul><li>Methodology: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Content analysis of 19 categories from O’Dwyer & Owen (2005) framework. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple scores per categories for max 30 points. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Highest scores: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>30 points: HSBC Holdings (2008) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>24 points: BT, Ericsson, Nestle (2008) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mean (s.d.) per year: </li></ul><ul><li>1999: 10.28 (3.43) </li></ul><ul><li>2002: 9.43 (3.54) </li></ul><ul><li>2005: 12.64 (4.83) </li></ul><ul><li>2008: 13.80 (6.67) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Quality of assurance statements (2) <ul><li>Mean (s.d.) across assurors: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Accountants 13.94 (4.50) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consultants 11.25 (5.69) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Certification bodies 14.30 (7.20) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Others 6.81 (4.47) </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Quality of assurance statements (2) <ul><li>Mean (s.d.) across standards: </li></ul><ul><li>No standard 9.73 (4.52) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 17.83 (4.17) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ISAE3000 17.50 (2.07) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>GRI 15.67 (7.38) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 + ISAE3000 16.00 (6.08) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 + GRI 20.13 (4.47) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ISAE3000 + GRI 17.80 (1.03) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AA1000 + ISAE3000 + GRI 19.50 (0.71) </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Research directions (1) <ul><li>Determinants of non-financial assurance: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Country-level (Simnett et al , 2009, Kolk & Perego, 2010) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industry-level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Firm-level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Individual-level </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Consequences of non-financial assurance: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tangible effects, e.g. on environmental performance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intangible effects, e.g. on reputation, stakeholder pressure, or financial analysts’ judgment </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Research directions (2) <ul><li>Dynamics of standardization applied to assurance engagements: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-stakeholder (AA1000) versus professional standards (ISAE 3000) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Global versus national standards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Voluntary versus mandatory standards </li></ul></ul>

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