accoutingCongratulations to Sophie Morin-Delerm for her new publication, co-authored with Stéphanie Chatelain-Ponroy, and intituled “Adoption of sustainable development reporting by universities: An analysis of French first-time reporters” in Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal (vol.29, issue 5, p. 887-918).
Abstract :
The purpose of this paper is to study the issuance of sustainable development reports by French universities, based on two dimensions proposed by Ansari et al. (2010): extensiveness and fidelity.
Three complementary data sources were used: an extensive literature review, exploratory interviews with SD officers from French universities, and the four editions of the Responsible Campus Guide (Guide des Campus Responsables). The empirical data collected were then subjected to a dynamic multi-level analysis drawing on three theoretical frameworks.
Four different profiles of universities appear, suggesting that the many isomorphic pressures exerted on universities influence the characteristics (extensiveness and fidelity) of their SD reports.
Further research is required to explore whether these findings are generalisable to business schools and universities in different contexts.
This study will be of interest to other HEIs seeking to embark on a similar sustainability reporting track. It is also a way to observe the characteristics of SD reports, to analyse what and how first-time reporters communicate.
This paper adds to existing research by focusing on a managerial innovation that is still relatively new in French universities. Its second contribution lies in its comparative approach introducing a distinction between early and later adopters of SD reporting. It also contributes to extending the existing theorisation of SD reporting.