Can sustainability report assurance be a collaborative process and practice beyond the ritual of verification?

Charika Channuntapipat

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This study examines the role of assurance for sustainability reporting whether it has the role beyond a verification mechanism for corporate sustainability reporting. This paper looks beyond the discourse about managerial and professional capture in sustainability report assurance practice. Drawing on the in‐depth interviews with assurance practitioners for sustainability reporting in the United Kingdom from different professional backgrounds, it provides an evidence‐based illustration on how sustainability report assurance service can contribute to more corporate sustainable actions. The findings also highlight the potential influences of the assurance providers on the assurance process and corporate decision‐making. The conceptualization of the assurance from the service perspective and of the assurance providers as transformational leaders enables this paper to challenge the current framing of the assurance services as a verification ritual that constraint its impacts and contributions to sustainable development.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBusiness Strategy and the Environment
Early online date25 Oct 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 25 Oct 2020


  • assurance provider
  • corporate sustainability
  • sustainability report assurance
  • sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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