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Special issue on Case study insights from the implementation of Integrated Reporting

Special issue call for papers from Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

Guest Editors:

Charl de Villiers, Professor of Accounting, The University of Waikato, New Zealand.

Leonardo Rinaldi, Lecturer in Accounting, Royal Holloway, University of London.

Jeffrey Unerman, Professor of Accounting and Corporate Accountability, Royal Holloway, University of London.

Why a special issue on case insights from integrated reporting?

Integrated reporting could arguably become the biggest development in external reporting in recent times – or it could fail to live up to the expectations of its many proponents, leading to little if any change. The promise is made by these proponents that integrated reporting will solve many of the issues with external reporting, such as providing forward looking information, focusing on strategic issues, providing both financial and non-financial information, and doing this in a concise and understandable format. These are laudable ideals and therefore perhaps it is understandable that corporate CEOs, CFOs, directors, regulators, the professional accounting bodies, and consultants appear to be excited about the new possibilities that it is claimed may be opened up by integrated reporting.

Although integrated reporting has been topical for a few years now, the final draft of the International Integrated Reporting Council’s (IIRC) first Integrated Reporting framework was only published in December 2013. A diverse range of prominent organisations are involved in the development and implementation of integrated reporting. At this stage, the extent of the influence that integrated reporting and the IIRC will have on the reporting environment, sustainability and society is yet unknown. Given these uncertainties and the many uncertainties in the IIRC framework, this early period in the development of integrated reporting should provide fascinating opportunities to observe and examine the ways accounting guidelines can solidify into, dare we use the term, generally accepted accounting practices – or how the reverse can happen. The location where many of these decisions will be made (or at least influenced), is within organisations that seek to implement integrated reporting during the next few years.

A 2014 special issue of AAAJ explored some of the foundational issues and practices of integrated reporting before the launch of the IIRC's final framework and when few organisations were publishing integrated reports. This new special issue will act as a focus for case studies of emerging practice following publication of the IIRC’s final framework.
Therefore, we now call for in-depth case study examination and analyses of the implementation of integrated reporting to critically assess and answer questions like:

• How do Integrated Reporting and the IIRC influence the reporting environment, sustainability, and society?
• By which mechanism(s) can “alternative accountings”, such as Integrated Reporting, become mainstream?
• To what extent and how does Integrated Reporting change the reporting environment (or does it develop into ‘just another report  and ‘business as usual’)?
• To what extent and why is Integrated Reporting treated as a reporting process only, or forms the basis of a continual internal procedure?
• How do organisations deal with the conflicting goals of providing comprehensive disclosure whilst keeping it concise?
• How do organisations deal with the concept of materiality in non-financial capitals?
• How are Integrated Reporting procedures integrated into everyday decision-making?
• To what extent and how does Integrated Reporting foster Integrated Thinking, and what do organisations consider Integrated Thinking to mean?
• What is the nature of change experienced by organisations through the implementation of Integrated Reporting and/or Integrated Thinking?
• How, if at all, are Integrated Reports used by analysts, the financial media, investors, and other stakeholders?
• Other research questions raised by De Villiers, C., Rinaldi, L., and   Unerman, J. (2014), “Integrated Reporting: Insights, gaps and an   agenda for future research”, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 27 No. 7, pp. 1042-1067.
• Other compelling Integrated Reporting research questions that can be answered using case studies, especially studies that take a critical perspective.
It is envisaged that a variety of theoretical perspectives could be used to help to provide and analyse novel, in-depth, case-based insights in the above areas.

Submission Instructions

The closing date for submissions for this special issue is 31 July 2016. Manuscripts should be submitted via Scholar One Manuscripts: Please choose the special issue from the list when submitting.

All papers will be reviewed in accordance with AAAJ’s normal procedures. Author guidelines can be found here.  Any queries in advance of submission can be sent for the attention of the Guest Editors to: [email protected].

Key Dates:

31 July 2016: Closing date for submissions
30 November 2016: First reviews done before this date
December 2016 – June 2017: Revisions and further review rounds
30 June 2017: Final revisions due
16 July 2017: Submit final copy to Emerald
15 September 2017: Publication of Special Issue (Volume 30, Issue 7)

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