Companies play a central role in the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); as such, they face institutional pressures to increase their engagement with SDGs. However, given the complexity of SDGs, it is unclear whether these pressures lead firms to adopt engagement approaches that address a few goals or the whole set of 17, and if that choice has any subsequent effect on financial performance. To shed light on these issues, this research draws on the neo-institutional theory to investigate whether two institutional determinants—industry type and country of origin—affect SDG engagement and whether such engagement improves financial performance. Based on a content analysis and a regression analysis on high-reputation companies (the 100 most sustainable firms in the world) over the period 2017–2020, we find that the institutional pressures associated with industry type and country-of-origin positively impact any engagement approach to SDGs. However, we establish that companies’ financial performance only generally improves when engaging with either the whole set of SDGs or a specific subset of the most frequently cited. This study provides important theoretical and practical contributions that illuminate firms’ institutional and financial rationales for adopting SDGs.

SDGs in corporate responsibility reporting: a longitudinal investigation of institutional determinants and financial performance

Galeazzo A.;
2023

Abstract

Companies play a central role in the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); as such, they face institutional pressures to increase their engagement with SDGs. However, given the complexity of SDGs, it is unclear whether these pressures lead firms to adopt engagement approaches that address a few goals or the whole set of 17, and if that choice has any subsequent effect on financial performance. To shed light on these issues, this research draws on the neo-institutional theory to investigate whether two institutional determinants—industry type and country of origin—affect SDG engagement and whether such engagement improves financial performance. Based on a content analysis and a regression analysis on high-reputation companies (the 100 most sustainable firms in the world) over the period 2017–2020, we find that the institutional pressures associated with industry type and country-of-origin positively impact any engagement approach to SDGs. However, we establish that companies’ financial performance only generally improves when engaging with either the whole set of SDGs or a specific subset of the most frequently cited. This study provides important theoretical and practical contributions that illuminate firms’ institutional and financial rationales for adopting SDGs.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3472378
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