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Sustainability 2018, 10(1), 131; doi:10.3390/su10010131

Overcoming the Barriers to the Diffusion of Sustainability Reporting in Italian LGOs: Better Stick or Carrot?

1
Department of Economics and Management, University of Brescia, Contrada Santa Chiara, 50, 25122 Brescia, Italy
2
Department of Law, University of Brescia, Contrada Santa Chiara, 50, 25122 Brescia, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 November 2017 / Revised: 2 January 2018 / Accepted: 4 January 2018 / Published: 9 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
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Abstract

The role of public-sector organizations (PSOs) in promoting the agenda of sustainability accounting and accountability is not often adequately considered. In the public sector realm, local governments are close to their communities and thus have a particularly important role to play in the pursuit of sustainability goals. Hence, further research is needed to understand if Local Government Organizations (LGOs) are using reporting tools to promote sustainable development. The empirical data showed that the Sustainability Report (SR) is not being as widely used as in past years. Over time, the majority of Italian municipalities have not initiated or continued sustainability reporting due to some barriers including cost reduction, voluntariness, and low SR effectiveness. The findings suggest the popularity of SRs in Italy is falling and the SR tool appears to be “mere trend reporting based on descriptive indicators leading to decreasing interest from internal and external audiences”. The carrot has been unsuccessful. Perhaps the implementation of mandatory requirements could alternatively be used as a stick. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainability reporting; local government organizations; sustainable development; mail survey; public sector sustainability reporting; local government organizations; sustainable development; mail survey; public sector
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MDPI and ACS Style

Giacomini, D.; Rocca, L.; Carini, C.; Mazzoleni, M. Overcoming the Barriers to the Diffusion of Sustainability Reporting in Italian LGOs: Better Stick or Carrot? Sustainability 2018, 10, 131.

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