The Effects of Institutional and Organisational Factors on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Reporting

The Essex Accounting Centre (EAC) warmly invite you to join this research seminar with guest speaker Professor Nava Subramaniam from RMIT University Australia, as she discusses her research on Sustainable Development Goals.

  • Wed 3 Mar 21

    08:30 - 10:00

  • Online

    Join the Seminar

  • Event speaker

    Professor Nava Subramaniam for RMIT University Australia

  • Event type

    Lectures, talks and seminars
    Essex Accounting Centre (EAC) Research Seminar Series

  • Event organiser

    Essex Business School

  • Contact details

    Dr Danson Kimani

The aim of the Essex Accounting Centre (EAC) research seminar series is to support our world-class research activities in four key areas: social responsibility and corporate governance; (management) accounting change (in privatised, public and third sectors); global development, corruption and accountability; and reporting, regulation and capital markets. The seminar series is also expected to promote interdisciplinary research that links the work of members of the centre with others both within the university and with external institutions.  

Seminar abstract

This study seeks to assess the impact of institutional and organisational factors on the form and extent of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) disclosures in corporate sustainability reports of Australia public-listed companies.

Data is derived from the sustainability reports covering a two-year period (2018 and 2019) of the top 150 Australian public-listed companies (ASX150) (as per market capitalisation as at 1st July 2019).

A mixed method approach involving content analysis of sustainability reports and multi-nominal logistic regression techniques are undertaken .

The findings show that SDG disclosure is a growing trend that is driven by institutional pressures and organisational factors.

The form and extent of SDG reporting is significantly related to the take-up of GRI guidelines and sustainability assurance, level of institutional ownership, CEO duality, and board characteristics, namely the level of female directorship, and board commitment to sustainability governance mechanisms.

Drawing on findings, this study concludes that CEOs and governing boards need to work together to support SDG disclosures and to respond to institutional pressures and investor needs, particularly institutional investors.

The research data is limited to a two-year period.

Complementary methodologies such as case studies are needed to fully understand sectoral idiosyncrasies and corporate approaches to the SDGs for policy-setting and improving SDG governance.

Finally, the SDGs are a global visionary framework for sustainable development and this study provides much needed evidence on the drivers of SDG disclosure.

The SDG disclosure index developed in this study thus provides a unique and important tool for future studies to compare and contrast the quality of SDG reporting over time.


This seminar is free to attend with no need to register in advance.

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Speaker bio

Nava is the Deputy Dean Research and Innovation, and Professor of Accounting in the School of Accounting, Information Systems and Supply Chain, RMIT University.

Her research interests cover corporate sustainability and governance, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); management controls and assurance, and the accounting profession.

She has led two ARC-Linkage funded research projects in the areas of ‘Corporate Governance in the Public Sector’ and ‘Carbon Emissions Risk Management’.

Her recent industry studies cover measurement and disclosure of the SDGs by Australian businesses.

Her research work has been published in journals such as;

  • Management Accounting Research,
  • Journal of Accounting and Public Policy,
  • AAAJ,
  • International Journal of Accounting,
  • International Journal of Auditing (IJA),
  • Accounting and Finance,
  • Journal of Business Ethics 

She is a CPA, and a member of the Editorial boards of AAAJ, IJA, Managerial Auditing Journal and Accounting Forum.

Nava has held positions research centre directorships at Deakin University as the Director of the Centre for Sustainable and Responsible Organisations (CSaRO), and at Griffith University.

She is also an adjunct professor at Amrita University, India