A Framework for Sustainability Reporting

Indra Abeysekera

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    28 Citations (Scopus)
    64 Downloads (Pure)


    Purpose: A sustainability reporting framework must demonstrate that resources are fairly bought and used to support diverse life on earth within habitable ranges. The purpose of this paper is to propose a principle-based sustainability reporting framework that measures, audits and reports based on sustainability outcomes and impacts as part of the corporate reporting framework.
    Design/methodology/approach: This paper draws on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and targets for preparing a reporting framework. It uses Gaia Theory and the Theory of Distributive Justice constructs that align with sustainable development principles to delineate a reporting approach.
    Findings: Frameworks that promote sustainability reporting have increasingly embraced UN SDGs but overly focus on performance promoting inter-firm comparisons. This framework introduces principle-based sustainability reporting where firms demonstrate their chosen contribution to sustainable development using 17 UN SDGs as goal posts.
    Research limitations/implications: This conceptual paper presents theoretical constructs that future research can empirically validate to enhance sustainability reporting.
    Practical implications: This principle-based sustainability reporting framework is implementable for corporate reporting, where sustainability reporting integrates with the financial and economic intellectual capital reporting frameworks.
    Social implications: This framework highlights the importance of acquiring and using resources to distribute justice and fairness. It is a joint project between firms and stakeholders.
    Originality/value: This framework promotes integrated thinking for firms to engage in principle-based sustainability reporting and provides a roadmap for sustainability reporting using the SDG Compass logic model.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1386-1409
    Number of pages24
    JournalSustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal
    Issue number6
    Early online date2022
    Publication statusPublished - 13 Oct 2022

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    Author contributions : This is a single-authored article. Acknowledgments: The author gratefully thanks the three anonymous reviewers and Guest Editor Professor Subhash Abhayawansa as an additional reviewer for their valuable feedback during the review process contributing to the enhanced quality of the paper. Funding : This research received no external funding. Institutional review board statement : The article is a conceptual paper. Informed consent : Participants provided informed consent for this research.

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2022, Indra Abeysekera.


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