Non-financial reporting: What about the internal interest? : A quantitative study on commission in the private sector

University essay from Umeå universitet/Företagsekonomi; Umeå universitet/Företagsekonomi

Abstract: The topic of sustainability has never been as relevant as it is today. Most recently, we have been following climate activists strike worldwide, the U.S. withdraw from the Paris Agreement and we have seen the world elite leave climate meetings without agreements. In 2015, to cope with the sustainability issues, the UN adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), for global actions to protect the planet and assure a better future for humanity. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 SDGs are set to ensure social, economic, and environmental progress at a global level. For a worldwide advance in progress has the private sector a leading role, and to ensure an effective framework of goals and a balance between the three dimensions are the standards adopted in dialogue with the private sector. The adoption of agendas and regulations has stressed sustainability reporting to become an important business issue for the last two decades. Although sustainability reporting emerged quite recently, the topic has been well researched. Recent research has been focusing on shareholder value and sustainability reporting. However, there is a lack of research focusing on the other stakeholder groups. This study intends to investigate what internal stakeholders of an organization in the private sector consider as important reporting activities following the Global Reporting Standards (GRI). This study is written on commission, hence does the sample consist of the commissioner’s employees. To fulfill the purpose of the study, a survey was conducted and distributed among the internal stakeholders of the organization. The results of the study found the social sustainability activities to be the most important ones to report, followed by the environmental sustainability activities and the economic sustainability activities. Any possible differences between different subgroups of the population (gender, age, employment, and position at work) were tested by establishing two-sample t-tests and a one-way Analysis of Variance. The gender-, age- and position at work variable showed significance, rejecting the null hypothesis that the mean responses are equal.

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