Intellectual capital disclosure trends: Singapore and Sri Lanka

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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the intellectual capital (IC) disclosure trends and disclosure category differences of top 20 listed firms in a developing nation, Sri Lanka, and moderately developed nation, Singapore. The paper aims to highlight the differences in IC disclosure practice between developing and developed nations. 

Design/methodology/approach: The study investigates the top 20 firms by market capitalization listed on the Colombo stock exchange in 1998-2000. Using the content analysis method, it reviews the annual reports of these firms to determine IC disclosure trends in Sri Lanka. It then compares these findings with a similar unpublished study undertaken in Singapore during the same period. 

Findings: The study identified IC disclosure differences between Sri Lankan and Singapore firms, and suggest reasons for differences from country perspectives. The paper highlights the need for a uniform methodology in intellectual disclosure framework to establish consistent disclosure practices. 

Practical implications: This study highlights the need to establish a uniform methodology for financial disclosure under International Financial Reporting Standards that can mobilize globally uniform disclosure IC disclosure practices. 

Originality/value: This study offers insights into comparative trends in IC disclosure practices between a moderately developed and a developing country.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)723-737
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Intellectual Capital
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 17 Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes


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