Examining the relationship between sustainability reporting processes and organizational learning and change

Ikenna Elias Asogwa, Maria Estela Varua, Emmanuel Tenakwah

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Although there have been a number of publications discussing sustainability reporting (SR) in private and public sectors within the last decades, the number has been quite low when compared to works on non-governmental organizations (NGOs). This research explores this and finds that SR is a key driver for organisational learning and change in NGOs. A combination of descriptive statistics, grounded theory (GT) and inferential statistics was used to analyse the data. The findings show that SR and organisational learning and change share a reciprocal relationship that begins as the driver for learning and extends as change. This reciprocal relationship is repetitive and improves reporting process through enhanced sustainability performance in a mimetic approach. The research shows that SR fosters opportunities for cost and benefit evaluation, the institutionalization of sustainability, transfer of skill and innovation, attitudinal change towards sustainability, stakeholder engagement and ownership, as well as
increasing the donor base. The findings further reinforce the contention that SR is influenced by organisational culture, donor behaviour and management decisions. The study also communicates the various lessons learnt from NGOs‘ sustainability
efforts that other NGOs, private and public sectors can benefit from.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-161
Number of pages17
JournalCorporate Ownership and Control
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2022


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