Skip to main content
Erschienen in: Sustainability Management Forum | NachhaltigkeitsManagementForum 1-4/2018

31.08.2018 | Originalbeitrag / Original article

What’s wrong with integrated reporting? A systematic review

verfasst von: Josua Oll, Sabrina Rommerskirchen

Erschienen in: Sustainability Nexus Forum | Ausgabe 1-4/2018

Einloggen

Aktivieren Sie unsere intelligente Suche um passende Fachinhalte oder Patente zu finden.

search-config
loading …

Abstract

Integrated reporting, the latest attempt to overcome the shortcomings of financial and sustainability reporting, has fast emerged as a new accounting practice. Recently, however, the integrated reporting movement has lost some of its momentum and is increasingly the subject of heated debate and controversy. In the related academic discourse, numerous scholars have started to question and challenge this new reporting trend from diverse angles. Against this backdrop, the present article reviews the current state of the academic literature to identify the major lines of criticism. Our findings show that the central critique relates to the fundamental concepts and guiding principles of the integrated reporting framework as well as to the International Integrated Reporting Council itself. By carving out the pivotal problem areas of integrated reporting, we identify critical issues that likely need to be addressed before integrated reporting can be expected to stand the test of time. We further identify three priority areas of criticism and discuss the attribution of responsibilities as well as approaches that offer potential solutions within these areas. Practitioners are invited to build upon our findings as potential intervention points for promoting the future acceptance and dissemination of integrated reports.

Sie haben noch keine Lizenz? Dann Informieren Sie sich jetzt über unsere Produkte:

Springer Professional "Wirtschaft+Technik"

Online-Abonnement

Mit Springer Professional "Wirtschaft+Technik" erhalten Sie Zugriff auf:

  • über 102.000 Bücher
  • über 537 Zeitschriften

aus folgenden Fachgebieten:

  • Automobil + Motoren
  • Bauwesen + Immobilien
  • Business IT + Informatik
  • Elektrotechnik + Elektronik
  • Energie + Nachhaltigkeit
  • Finance + Banking
  • Management + Führung
  • Marketing + Vertrieb
  • Maschinenbau + Werkstoffe
  • Versicherung + Risiko

Jetzt Wissensvorsprung sichern!

Springer Professional "Technik"

Online-Abonnement

Mit Springer Professional "Technik" erhalten Sie Zugriff auf:

  • über 67.000 Bücher
  • über 390 Zeitschriften

aus folgenden Fachgebieten:

  • Automobil + Motoren
  • Bauwesen + Immobilien
  • Business IT + Informatik
  • Elektrotechnik + Elektronik
  • Energie + Nachhaltigkeit
  • Maschinenbau + Werkstoffe




 

Jetzt Wissensvorsprung sichern!

Fußnoten
1
According to the KPMG Survey of Corporate Responsibility Reporting 2017 (KPMG 2017), about one-third of companies label their reports as integrated without specific reference to the IIRC framework. However, and for the sake of clarity, this article uses the terms integrated reporting and integrated report(s) in the following chapters exclusively to refer to those reports that comply with the IIRC reporting framework. The abbreviation G250 captures “the world’s 250 largest companies by revenue based on the Fortune 500 ranking of 2016,” whereas N100 “refers to a worldwide sample of 4900 companies comprising the top 100 companies by revenue in each of the 49 countries researched” in the study (KPMG 2017, p. 3).
 
2
The term impression management is generally defined as “the process by which individuals attempt to control the impressions others form of them” (Leary and Kowalski 1990, p. 34). In the specific context of corporate reporting practice, impression management refers to “the tendency for the organization to use data selectively and present them in a favourable light to manipulate audience perceptions of corporate achievements” (Melloni 2015, p. 665).
 
3
We fully acknowledge that the identified points of criticism are not necessarily unique to IR. For instance, the principle of reliability has also been subject to criticism and controversial debate within the context of sustainability (Boiral and Henri 2017) and financial reporting (Zhang 2012). In contrast to these reporting approaches, however, IR is far from being a mainstream reporting practice. We therefore argue that all identified points of criticism deserve attention within the IR movement, although some issues are applicable to reporting frameworks in general.
 
4
All 37 articles included in our review are marked with an asterisk (*).
 
Literatur
Zurück zum Zitat Adams C (2017) Understanding integrated reporting: The concise guide to integrated thinking and the future of corporate reporting. Routledge, New YorkCrossRef Adams C (2017) Understanding integrated reporting: The concise guide to integrated thinking and the future of corporate reporting. Routledge, New YorkCrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Alexander D, Blum V (2016) Ecological economics: A Luhmannian analysis of integrated reporting. Ecol Econ 129:241–251CrossRef * Alexander D, Blum V (2016) Ecological economics: A Luhmannian analysis of integrated reporting. Ecol Econ 129:241–251CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Atkins J, Atkins BC, Thomson I, Maroun W (2015) “Good” news from nowhere: Imagining utopian sustainable accounting. Account Auditing Account J 28:651–670CrossRef Atkins J, Atkins BC, Thomson I, Maroun W (2015) “Good” news from nowhere: Imagining utopian sustainable accounting. Account Auditing Account J 28:651–670CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Beck C, Dumay J, Frost G (2017) In pursuit of a ‘single source of truth’: From threatened legitimacy to integrated reporting. J Bus Ethics 141:191–205CrossRef * Beck C, Dumay J, Frost G (2017) In pursuit of a ‘single source of truth’: From threatened legitimacy to integrated reporting. J Bus Ethics 141:191–205CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Boiral O, Henri JF (2017) Is sustainability performance comparable? A study of GRI reports of mining organizations. Bus Soc 56:283–317CrossRef Boiral O, Henri JF (2017) Is sustainability performance comparable? A study of GRI reports of mining organizations. Bus Soc 56:283–317CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Bommel K van (2014) Towards a legitimate compromise? An exploration of integrated reporting in the Netherlands. Account Auditing Account J 27:1157–1189CrossRef * Bommel K van (2014) Towards a legitimate compromise? An exploration of integrated reporting in the Netherlands. Account Auditing Account J 27:1157–1189CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Brown J, Dillard J (2014) Integrated reporting: On the need for broadening out and opening up. Account Auditing Account J 27:1120–1156CrossRef * Brown J, Dillard J (2014) Integrated reporting: On the need for broadening out and opening up. Account Auditing Account J 27:1120–1156CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Burke JJ, Clark CE (2016) The business case for integrated reporting: Insights from leading practitioners, regulators, and academics. Bus Horiz 59:273–228CrossRef * Burke JJ, Clark CE (2016) The business case for integrated reporting: Insights from leading practitioners, regulators, and academics. Bus Horiz 59:273–228CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Chaidali P, Jones MJ (2017) It’s a matter of trust: Exploring the perceptions of integrated reporting preparers. Crit Perspect Account 48:1–20CrossRef * Chaidali P, Jones MJ (2017) It’s a matter of trust: Exploring the perceptions of integrated reporting preparers. Crit Perspect Account 48:1–20CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Coulson AB, Adams CA, Nugent MN, Haynes K (2015) Exploring metaphors of capitals and the framing of multiple capitals. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:290–314CrossRef * Coulson AB, Adams CA, Nugent MN, Haynes K (2015) Exploring metaphors of capitals and the framing of multiple capitals. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:290–314CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Dumay J, Bernardi C, Guthrie J, Demartini P (2016) Integrated reporting: A structured literature review. Account Forum 40:166–185CrossRef Dumay J, Bernardi C, Guthrie J, Demartini P (2016) Integrated reporting: A structured literature review. Account Forum 40:166–185CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Eccles R, Armbrester K (2011) Integrated reporting in the cloud. IESE Insight 8:13–20CrossRef Eccles R, Armbrester K (2011) Integrated reporting in the cloud. IESE Insight 8:13–20CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Fasan M, Mio C (2017) Fostering stakeholder engagement: The role of materiality disclosure in integrated reporting. Bus Strategy Environ 26:288–305CrossRef Fasan M, Mio C (2017) Fostering stakeholder engagement: The role of materiality disclosure in integrated reporting. Bus Strategy Environ 26:288–305CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Feng T, Cummings L, Tweedie D (2017) Exploring integrated thinking in integrated reporting—an exploratory study in Australia. J Intellect Cap 18:330–353CrossRef * Feng T, Cummings L, Tweedie D (2017) Exploring integrated thinking in integrated reporting—an exploratory study in Australia. J Intellect Cap 18:330–353CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Fink A (2014) Conducting research literature reviews. From the Internet to paper, 4th edn. SAGE, Thousand Oaks Fink A (2014) Conducting research literature reviews. From the Internet to paper, 4th edn. SAGE, Thousand Oaks
Zurück zum Zitat * Flower J (2015) The international integrated reporting council: A story of failure. Crit Perspect Account 27:1–17CrossRef * Flower J (2015) The international integrated reporting council: A story of failure. Crit Perspect Account 27:1–17CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Gunarathne N, Senaratne S (2017) Diffusion of integrated reporting in an emerging South Asian (SAARC) nation. Manag Auditing J 32:524–548CrossRef * Gunarathne N, Senaratne S (2017) Diffusion of integrated reporting in an emerging South Asian (SAARC) nation. Manag Auditing J 32:524–548CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Günther E, Herrmann J, Lange A (2017) Hemmnisse der integrierten Berichterstattung: Warum entscheiden sich Unternehmen gegen die Umsetzung? Z Corp Gov 17:97–144 Günther E, Herrmann J, Lange A (2017) Hemmnisse der integrierten Berichterstattung: Warum entscheiden sich Unternehmen gegen die Umsetzung? Z Corp Gov 17:97–144
Zurück zum Zitat Hahn R, Kühnen M (2013) Determinants of sustainability reporting: A review of results, trends, theory, and opportunities in an expanding field of research. J Clean Prod 59:5–21CrossRef Hahn R, Kühnen M (2013) Determinants of sustainability reporting: A review of results, trends, theory, and opportunities in an expanding field of research. J Clean Prod 59:5–21CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Hahn R, Reimsbach D, Schiemann F (2015) Organizations, climate change, and transparency: Reviewing the literature on carbon disclosure. Organ Environ 28:80–102CrossRef Hahn R, Reimsbach D, Schiemann F (2015) Organizations, climate change, and transparency: Reviewing the literature on carbon disclosure. Organ Environ 28:80–102CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Haji AA, Anifowose M (2016) The trend of integrated reporting practice in South Africa: Ceremonial or substantive? Sustain Account Manag Policy J 7:190–224CrossRef * Haji AA, Anifowose M (2016) The trend of integrated reporting practice in South Africa: Ceremonial or substantive? Sustain Account Manag Policy J 7:190–224CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Haji AA, Anifowose M (2017) Initial trends in corporate disclosures following the introduction of integrated reporting practice in South Africa. J Intellect Cap 18:373–399CrossRef * Haji AA, Anifowose M (2017) Initial trends in corporate disclosures following the introduction of integrated reporting practice in South Africa. J Intellect Cap 18:373–399CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Higgins C, Stubbs W, Love T (2014) Walking the talk(s): Organisational narratives of integrated reporting. Account Auditing Account J 27:1090–1119CrossRef Higgins C, Stubbs W, Love T (2014) Walking the talk(s): Organisational narratives of integrated reporting. Account Auditing Account J 27:1090–1119CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Humphrey C, O’Dwyer B, Unerman J (2017) Re-theorizing the configuration of organizational fields: The IIRC and the pursuit of ‘enlightened’ corporate reporting. Account Bus Res 47:30–63CrossRef * Humphrey C, O’Dwyer B, Unerman J (2017) Re-theorizing the configuration of organizational fields: The IIRC and the pursuit of ‘enlightened’ corporate reporting. Account Bus Res 47:30–63CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * James ML (2015) Accounting majors’ perceptions of the advantages and disadvantages of sustainability and integrated reporting. J Legal Ethical Regul Issues 18:107–123 * James ML (2015) Accounting majors’ perceptions of the advantages and disadvantages of sustainability and integrated reporting. J Legal Ethical Regul Issues 18:107–123
Zurück zum Zitat Kirca AH, Yaprac A (2010) The use of meta-analysis in international business research: Its current status and suggestions for better practice. Int Bus Rev 19:306–314CrossRef Kirca AH, Yaprac A (2010) The use of meta-analysis in international business research: Its current status and suggestions for better practice. Int Bus Rev 19:306–314CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Leary MR, Kowalski RM (1990) Impression management: A literature review and two-component model. Psychol Bull 107:34–47CrossRef Leary MR, Kowalski RM (1990) Impression management: A literature review and two-component model. Psychol Bull 107:34–47CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Lueg K, Lueg R, Andersen K, Dancianu V (2016) Integrated reporting with CSR practices: A pragmatic constructivist case study in a Danish cultural setting. Corp Commun Int J 21:20–35CrossRef * Lueg K, Lueg R, Andersen K, Dancianu V (2016) Integrated reporting with CSR practices: A pragmatic constructivist case study in a Danish cultural setting. Corp Commun Int J 21:20–35CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Maniora J (2017) Is integrated reporting really the superior mechanism for the integration of ethics into the core business model? An empirical analysis. J Bus Ethics 140:755–786CrossRef * Maniora J (2017) Is integrated reporting really the superior mechanism for the integration of ethics into the core business model? An empirical analysis. J Bus Ethics 140:755–786CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Maroun W (2017) Assuring the integrated report: Insights and recommendations from auditors and preparers. Br Account Rev 49:329–346CrossRef * Maroun W (2017) Assuring the integrated report: Insights and recommendations from auditors and preparers. Br Account Rev 49:329–346CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Melloni G (2015) Intellectual capital disclosure in integrated reporting: An impression management analysis. J Intellect Cap 16:661–680CrossRef * Melloni G (2015) Intellectual capital disclosure in integrated reporting: An impression management analysis. J Intellect Cap 16:661–680CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Narvaez-Berthelemot N, Russell J (2001) World distribution of social science journals: A view from the periphery. Scientometrics 51:223–239CrossRef Narvaez-Berthelemot N, Russell J (2001) World distribution of social science journals: A view from the periphery. Scientometrics 51:223–239CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Owen G (2013) Integrated reporting: A review of developments and their implications for the accounting curriculum. Account Educ 22:340–356CrossRef Owen G (2013) Integrated reporting: A review of developments and their implications for the accounting curriculum. Account Educ 22:340–356CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Perego P, Kennedy S, Whiteman G (2016) A lot of icing but little cake? Taking integrated reporting forward. J Clean Prod 136:53–64CrossRef * Perego P, Kennedy S, Whiteman G (2016) A lot of icing but little cake? Taking integrated reporting forward. J Clean Prod 136:53–64CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Phillips D, Watson L, Willis M (2011) Benefits of comprehensive integrated reporting. Financ Exec 27:26–30 Phillips D, Watson L, Willis M (2011) Benefits of comprehensive integrated reporting. Financ Exec 27:26–30
Zurück zum Zitat * Rensburg R, Botha E (2014) Is integrated reporting the silver bullet of financial communication? A stakeholder perspective from South Africa. Public Relat Rev 40:144–152CrossRef * Rensburg R, Botha E (2014) Is integrated reporting the silver bullet of financial communication? A stakeholder perspective from South Africa. Public Relat Rev 40:144–152CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Reuter M, Messner M (2015) Lobbying on the integrated reporting framework: An analysis of comment letters to the 2011 discussion paper of the IIRC. Account Auditing Account J 28:365–402CrossRef * Reuter M, Messner M (2015) Lobbying on the integrated reporting framework: An analysis of comment letters to the 2011 discussion paper of the IIRC. Account Auditing Account J 28:365–402CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Rousseau DM, Manning J, Denyer D (2008) Evidence in management and organizational science: Assembling the field’s full weight of scientific knowledge through reflective reviews. Acad Manag Ann 2:475–515CrossRef Rousseau DM, Manning J, Denyer D (2008) Evidence in management and organizational science: Assembling the field’s full weight of scientific knowledge through reflective reviews. Acad Manag Ann 2:475–515CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Searcy C, Buslovich R (2014) Corporate perspectives on the development and use of sustainability reports. J Bus Ethics 121:149–169CrossRef * Searcy C, Buslovich R (2014) Corporate perspectives on the development and use of sustainability reports. J Bus Ethics 121:149–169CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Setia N, Abhayawansa S, Joshi M, Huynh AV (2015) Integrated reporting in South Africa: Some initial evidence. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:397–424CrossRef * Setia N, Abhayawansa S, Joshi M, Huynh AV (2015) Integrated reporting in South Africa: Some initial evidence. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:397–424CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Seuring S, Gold S (2012) Conducting content-analysis based literature reviews in supply chain management. J Supply Chain Manag 17:544–555CrossRef Seuring S, Gold S (2012) Conducting content-analysis based literature reviews in supply chain management. J Supply Chain Manag 17:544–555CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Simnett R, Huggins AL (2015) Integrated reporting and assurance: Where can research add value? Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:29–53CrossRef * Simnett R, Huggins AL (2015) Integrated reporting and assurance: Where can research add value? Sustain Account Manag Policy J 6:29–53CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Spina G, Caniato F, Luzzini D, Ronchi S (2013) Past, present and future trends of purchasing and supply management: An extensive literature review. Ind Mark Manag 42:1202–1212CrossRef Spina G, Caniato F, Luzzini D, Ronchi S (2013) Past, present and future trends of purchasing and supply management: An extensive literature review. Ind Mark Manag 42:1202–1212CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Stacchezzini R, Melloni G, Lai A (2016) Sustainability management and reporting: The role of integrated reporting for communicating corporate sustainability management. J Clean Prod 136:102–110CrossRef * Stacchezzini R, Melloni G, Lai A (2016) Sustainability management and reporting: The role of integrated reporting for communicating corporate sustainability management. J Clean Prod 136:102–110CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat Stechemesser K, Guenther E (2012) Carbon accounting: A systematic literature review. J Clean Prod 36:17–38CrossRef Stechemesser K, Guenther E (2012) Carbon accounting: A systematic literature review. J Clean Prod 36:17–38CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Steyn M (2014) Organisational benefits and implementation challenges of mandatory integrated reporting: Perspectives of senior executives at South African listed companies. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 5:476–503CrossRef * Steyn M (2014) Organisational benefits and implementation challenges of mandatory integrated reporting: Perspectives of senior executives at South African listed companies. Sustain Account Manag Policy J 5:476–503CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Stubbs W, Higgins C (2014) Integrated reporting and internal mechanisms of change. Account Auditing Account J 27:1068–1089CrossRef * Stubbs W, Higgins C (2014) Integrated reporting and internal mechanisms of change. Account Auditing Account J 27:1068–1089CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Veltri S, Silvestri A (2015) The Free State University integrated reporting: A critical consideration. J Intellect Cap 16:443–462CrossRef * Veltri S, Silvestri A (2015) The Free State University integrated reporting: A critical consideration. J Intellect Cap 16:443–462CrossRef
Zurück zum Zitat * Vorster S, Marais C (2014) Corporate governance, integrated reporting, and stakeholder management: A case study of Eskom. Afr J Bus Ethics 8:31–57 * Vorster S, Marais C (2014) Corporate governance, integrated reporting, and stakeholder management: A case study of Eskom. Afr J Bus Ethics 8:31–57
Zurück zum Zitat Zhou S, Simnett R, Green W (2017) Does integrated reporting matter to the capital market? Abacus 53:94–132CrossRef Zhou S, Simnett R, Green W (2017) Does integrated reporting matter to the capital market? Abacus 53:94–132CrossRef
Metadaten
Titel
What’s wrong with integrated reporting? A systematic review
verfasst von
Josua Oll
Sabrina Rommerskirchen
Publikationsdatum
31.08.2018
Verlag
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Erschienen in
Sustainability Nexus Forum / Ausgabe 1-4/2018
Print ISSN: 2948-1619
Elektronische ISSN: 2948-1627
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00550-018-0475-x

Weitere Artikel der Ausgabe 1-4/2018

Sustainability Management Forum | NachhaltigkeitsManagementForum 1-4/2018 Zur Ausgabe