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Corporate Responsibility Reporting and its Determinants in Comparative Perspective – a Review of the Empirical Literature and a Meta-analysis

Authors

  • Matthias S. Fifka

    Corresponding author
    1. Visiting Professor for Monte Ahuja College of Business, Cleveland State University, Ohio, USA
    • Dr Juergen Meyer Endowed Professor for International Business Ethics and Sustainability, Cologne Business School (CBS), Köln, Germany
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Matthias S. Fifka, Dr Juergen Meyer Endowed Professor for International Business Ethics and Sustainability, Cologne Business School (CBS), Hardefuststrasse 1, 50677 Köln, Germany. E-mail: m.fifka@cbs-edu.de

ABSTRACT

For four decades, reporting on corporate responsibility by businesses has been the subject of empirical research. In the 1970s and 1980s, studies mostly originated from Anglo-Saxon and Western European countries. During the last two decades research on responsibility reporting was increasingly undertaken in emerging and developing countries as well – always following the reporting practices of the respective businesses. Consequentially, a very large number of studies exist today. Many of these have empirically investigated the determinants of responsibility reporting and examined whether internal factors like size and industry or external factors like stakeholder pressures have an impact on disclosure. Thus, the purpose of the following paper is twofold. First, it seeks to provide an overview of the existing literature in order to facilitate further research. Overall, 186 studies have been examined for the determinants which they considered and have been grouped according to their geographical origin. This provides for an analysis of whether academics from different regions have taken different approaches to the empirical examination of responsibility reporting and if their results differed. The findings show that scholars across regions have taken different paths in empirical research, but indications for a variation in the impact of specific determinants on reporting are weak. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.

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