Exploring the accounting community perspective on the “Consultation Paper on Sustainability Reporting”

Carini Cristian; Rocca Laura; Veneziani Monica; Teodori Claudio

Purpose: Through the publication of the Consultation Paper on Sustainability Reporting
(CPSR), the IFRS Foundation aimed at assessing the demand for sustainability
reporting standards. An intense debate followed at both academic and practitioner levels.
This study focuses on the accounting community’s comment letters sent on the CPSR to
understand the positions expressed by academics and by practitioners such as audit firms,
accountancy bodies, and consultants/accounting firms on the 11 issues raised by the IFRS Foundation.
Design/methodology/approach: A total of 91 comment letters have been analysed in this study. Both qualitative (manual content analysis) and quantitative methods were used, and a statistical analysis was performed to validate the data.
Findings: The findings reveal a positive and pragmatic approach by the accounting and the audit firms, as well as by the accountancy bodies, towards a global common set of standards for the sustainability disclosure led by the IFRS Foundation. In contrast, the position of the academics seems more critical, especially as concerns their disagreement
on the scope of the climate-related financial disclosure and risks.
Originality/value: This paper contributes to the accounting literature with a policyrelevant
study on the main criticalities and discussion on the CPRS draft made by skilled and experienced community’s members. This may enhance the quality of the revised version of the European directive on sustainability reporting. Future research may extend the scope of the study to all the other comment letters.

Keywords: sustainability reporting, comment letters, consultation paper, auditing,
practitioners, academics

Carini C., Rocca L., Veneziani M., Teodori C. (2023). Exploring the accounting community perspective on the “Consultation Paper on Sustainability Reporting”, Financial Reporting, 1, pp. 67-96. Doi: 10.3280/FR2023-001003