Corporate Environmental Reporting on the Web – An Exploratory Study of Chinese Listed Companies

Tianxi Zhang, Simon S. Gao, Jane J. Zhang


While the literature has given a considerable attention to internet financial reporting, limited studies mainly from developed economies have emerged to explain and predict corporate behavior relating to corporaten environmental reporting on Websites. This preliminary study attempts
to fill a gap by investigating Internet environmental reporting (IER)
in China and examining the current IER practice of Chinese top listed companies. This study finds that IER is increasingly used in China to disclose corporate social and environmental activity and policy. Companies are increasingly using the phrases of „sustainability‟ and „corporate social responsibility‟ in their IER. Website-specific reporting concerning social and environmental issues, performance and activities has growingly been adopted by Chinese top listed companies as the main approach to IER. Both the quantity of disclosure and the areas of coverage have steadily
increased. While IER in China is developing, there remains a considerable discrepancy in terms of reporting practices and the levels of social and environmental information disclosed. There are no generally accepted standards and guidelines for IER in China, and the data/information disclosed are largely incomparable. External auditing of IER remains a problem.


Accounting, China, Chinese listed companies, corporate social and environmental disclosure, internet environmental reporting, sustainability, website.

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