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CREATING LEGITIMACY THROUGH SUSTAINABILITY ASSURANCE: EVIDENCE FROM EUROPE

Iqbal, Abdullah and Meqbel, Rasmi and Acquaye, Adolf and Alshehabi, Ahmad (2021) CREATING LEGITIMACY THROUGH SUSTAINABILITY ASSURANCE: EVIDENCE FROM EUROPE. Working paper. Kent University (Unpublished) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:89970)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)

Abstract

In this study, we investigate the effects of corporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance and controversies on companies’ decision to obtain sustainability assurance (SA), and their choice of assurance provider, scope and level. Drawing on legitimacy theory, we argue that not only socially/enviromenally responsible companies issue SA reports as a signal of their CSR commitment, but also those involved in ESG controversies use SA symbolically. Using a sample of 5,784 firm-year observations from European companies listed in STOXX Europe 600 index for the period 2011-2018, we find new empirical evidence that both ESG performance and controversies have significant and positive impacts on decisions to issue SA reports. However, our empirical analysis further indicates that companies with higher ESG performance tend to choose higher assurance scopes and levels. Our evidence provides new insights that could assist stakeholders in differentiating between symbolic and substantial SA reports.

Item Type: Monograph (Working paper)
Uncontrolled keywords: sustainability assurance, ESG performance, ESG controversies, legitimacy theory.
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BJ Ethics
Divisions: Divisions > Kent Business School - Division > Department of Accounting and Finance
Depositing User: Abdullah Iqbal
Date Deposited: 31 Aug 2021 14:12 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2021 07:38 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/89970 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Iqbal, Abdullah: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3013-1007
Acquaye, Adolf: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0430-2498
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