Designing environmental impact-valuation assemblages for sustainable decision-making

Ian Thomson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


We exist in a time of apparently unresolvable environmental problems. If environmental management accounting is to play a meaningful role in resolving these problems, there is a need to build capacity to design environmental impact-valuation assemblages appropriate for sustainable transformation. Impacts are typically described in terms of impacting on what, impacting on whom, quantification of change, responsibility for the impact, risk and uncertainty, impacting where and when, and legitimacy of impact measurement. Each environmental impact-valuation is dependent on a series of choices on how to undertake this work. This chapter presents a framework to help make choices that avoid known pitfalls and increase the chances of more sustainable governance and decision-making. The complex process of measurement or valuation of environmental impact involves creating accounts of the consequences of a decision on selected socio-ecological systems. Paradoxically, the calculation of environmental impacts is designed to prevent them ever happening or to put in place mitigation or restorative measures.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Environmental Accounting
EditorsJan Bebbington, Carlos Larrinaga, Brendan O'Dwyer, Ian Thomson
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780429623103, 9780367152369
ISBN (Print)9780367152338, 9780367724900
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 selection and editorial matter, Jan Bebbington, Carlos Larrinaga, Brendan O’Dwyer, and Ian Thomson; individual chapters, the contributors.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)


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