Social and environmental accounting, organisational change and management accounting: a processual view
Management Accounting Research
Consistent with calls for in-depth studies of social and environmental accounting and reporting (SEAR) intervention (Bebbington, 2007; Fraser, 2012; Contrafatto, 2012), our paper focuses on the inter-relationship between organisational change and SEAR practices, as well as the involvement of management accounting in such organisational dynamics. Drawing insight from both Laughlin (1991) and Burns and Scapens’ (2000) theoretical frameworks, we explore the processes of change through which SEAR practices become elevated to strategising status, in the context of broader organisational and extra-organisational developments, but we also illuminate how institutionalised assumptions of profit-seeking limit the extent to which broader sustainability concerns become infused into day-to-day business practice. Our paper highlights the importance of management accounting in facilitating and shaping the cumulative path of SEAR practices (and sustainability more generally); however, we also heed caution against uncritical reliance upon conventional management accounting tools. The following extends our understanding of SEAR practices as cumulative process over time, an awareness of the potential limits to such developments in profit-seeking organisations, and stresses a need to be circumspect when involving management accounting.
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Management Accounting Research. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Management Accounting Research, 24(4), 2013, pp.349-65 DOI 10.1016/j.mar.2013.10.004
24(4), 2013, pp.349-65
Place of publication