Sustainability Accounting and Accountability
Edited by Jan Bebbington, Jeffrey Unerman, Brendan O'Dwyer
Routledge – 2014 – 300 pages
The management and balancing of social, environmental and economic sustainability is one of the most complex and urgent challenges facing both private and public sector organizations today; with these challenges of sustainability posing many risks to, and many opportunities for, advancing the aims and performance of organizations. Accounting and accountability processes and practices provide key tools to help organizations to more effectively identify and manage the risks and opportunities of sustainability.
Popular features from the first edition are retained, whilst recent developments in theory and practice are accounted for. New substantive chapters on water resource accounting, carbon accounting, and decision making have been introduced and the book continues to benefit from a host of expert contributors from around the world, including Jesse Dillard, Rob Gray, Craig Deegan.
This comprehensive and authoritative textbook will continue to be a key resource for students of accounting and sustainability, as well as being a vital tool for researchers.
'This book is a useful contribution as an update to the traditional world of ‘ESG’ and ‘triple bottom line’ which has been on the agenda for some years.'
Paul Druckman, Chief Executive Officer, The International Integrated Reporting Council
'In a still emerging field Sustainability accounting and accountability gives a comprehensive overview of the state of play and puts the developments to date in a rich context. In addition to theoretical reflections the authors address practical challenges as a basis for future discussions. Sincerely recommended to those who will meet sustainability during their professional career, which includes accounting and MBA students, and to those who want to get an overview of the topic.'
Wim Bartels, Global Head Sustainability Reporting & Assurance at KPMG, the Netherlands
'A key theme in sustainability accounting and accountability, one that runs explicitly through this book, is that critique is energising, life giving. This book challenges and encourages you to think differently. It makes you realise that when accounting for sustainability gets too comfortable, it cannot be sustainable.'
Chris Humphrey, Professor of Accounting, University of Manchester, UK
'This book addresses big questions about sustainability and outlines and illustrates the uses, possibilities and limitations of accounting and accountability. This makes for a well-integrated and powerful contribution.'
Jeremy Moon, Professor, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark.
Praise for the previous edition:
'Any researcher beginning work, or intending to continue work in this area, will benefit from reading this book which clearly updates positions recorded in the literature to date, thus making it a 'must read'.' - Reg Mathews, The British Accounting Review
'An excellent sourcebook for sustainability accounting.' Martin Freedman, The Accounting Review
'This much needed book … is a useful guide for students, teachers, researchers and policy-makers in the field of sustainability accounting' Taran Patel, European Accounting Review
Part I: Setting the context for sustainability accounting and accountability 1. Introduction 2. Mapping the terrain of sustainability and accounting for sustainability 3. Sustainability accounting and education Part II: Accounting techniques and sustainable development 4. Histories, rationales and future prospects for sustainability reporting: CSR, GRI, IIRC and Beyond 5. Independent assurance of sustainability reports 6. Stakeholder perspectives and engagement 7. Developing Silent and Shadow Accounts 8. Environmental and social assessment in sustainable finance 9. Organisational change and sustainability accounting Part III: Accounting for sustainable development in other organizational settings 10. The nature of NGO accountability 11. Sustainability accounting, reporting and management in the public sector Part IV: Accounting and biophysical concerns 12. Accounting and global climate change issues 13. Accounting for water resource use Part V: Conceptual interpretations of accounting for sustainable development 14. Philosophical underpinnings of sustainability and organizational accountability 15. Organisational legitimacy as a motive for sustainability reporting 16. Insights into sustainability reporting from institutional theory 17. Drawing to a close and future horizons
Jeffrey Unerman is Professor of Accounting and Accountability at the University of Manchester, UK
Jan Bebbington is Professor of Accounting and Sustainable Development at the University of St. Andrews, UK
Brendan O’Dwyer is Professor of Accounting at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands