Skip to main content

Reporting of Corporate Social Responsibility in Central Public Sector Enterprises: A Study of Post Mandatory Regime in India

Abstract

This paper explores the level of corporate social responsibility (CSR) contributions disclosed by central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) in India. This paper analyses the nature and quality of CSR disclosures (CSRDs) made by CPSEs listed in India following the issue of CSR guidelines by the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) for CPSEs in March 2010. The purpose of the study is to investigate the impact of CSR guidelines on the reporting practices of the CPSEs. A content analysis of annual reports across seven themes shows that Human Resources (HR) and Community Development are the prime focus areas of CSR disclosures, whereas Carbon and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions are the least reported activity. The disclosures across all CSR themes are primarily narrative rather than quantitative or in monetary terms. The findings of the study may help policy makers in India to assess practices and devise detailed and specific CSRD requirements, rather than the current general mandatory requirements, to enhance the performance and quality of CSRDs by the CPSEs.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1

References

  • Adams, C. A. (2002). Internal organisational factors influencing corporate social and ethical reporting: Beyond current theorising. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 15(2), 223–250.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Adams, C. A., Hill, W.-Y., & Roberts, C. B. (1998). Corporate social reporting practices in Western Europe: Legitimating corporate behaviour? The British Accounting Review, 30(1), 1–21.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Akhtaruddin, M., Hossain, M. A., Hossain, M., & Yao, L. (2009). Corporate governance and voluntary disclosure in corporate annual reports of Malaysian listed firms. Journal of Applied Management Accounting Research, 7(1), 1.

    Google Scholar 

  • Almquist, R., Grossi, G., van Helden, G. J., & Reichard, C. (2013). Public sector governance and accountability. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 24(7–8), 479–487.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Arevalo, J. A., & Aravind, D. (2011). Corporate social responsibility practices in India: Approach, drivers, and barriers. Corporate Governance, 11(4), 399–414.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Azim, M. I., Ahmed, S., & Islam, M. S. (2009). Corporate social reporting practice: Evidence from listed companies in Bangladesh. Journal of Asia-Pacific Business, 10(2), 130–145.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Belal, A. R. (2001). A study of corporate social disclosures in Bangladesh. Managerial Auditing Journal, 16(5), 274–289.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Branco, M. C., & Rodrigues, L. L. (2006). Communication of corporate social responsibility by Portuguese banks: A legitimacy theory perspective. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 11(3), 232–248.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Chapple, W., & Moon, J. (2005). Corporate social responsibility (CSR) in Asia: a seven-country study of CSR web site reporting. Business and Society, 44(4), 415–441.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Cho, C. H., Michelon, G., Patten, D. M., & Roberts, R. W. (2015). CSR disclosure: The more things change…? Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 28(1), 14–35.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Clarke, J., & Gibson-Sweet, M. (1999). The use of corporate social disclosures in the management of reputation and legitimacy: A cross sectoral analysis of UK Top 100 Companies. Business Ethics: A European Review, 8(1), 5–13.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Commercial Audit Report. (2009–2010). Corporate social responsibility in government companies. Available at http://www.cag.gov.in/html/reports/commercial/2009_22CA/chap_3.pdf.

  • Das, S. C. (2013). Corporate social reporting and human resource disclosures: Experiences from insurance companies in India. Social Responsibility Journal, 9(1), 19–32.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Deegan, C. (2012). Australian financial accounting (6th Edn.). McGraw-Hill Education.

  • Deegan, C., & Rankin, M. (1999). The environmental reporting expectations gap: Australian evidence. The British Accounting Review, 31(3), 313–346.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Deegan, C., Rankin, M., & Tobin, J. (2002). An examination of the corporate social and environmental disclosures of BHP from 1983–1997: A test of legitimacy theory. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 15(3), 312–343.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Deegan, C., Rankin, M., & Voght, P. (2000). Firms’ disclosure reactions to major social incidents: Australian evidence. Accounting Forum. Wiley Online Library, pp. 101–130.

  • Deliotte and Indian Chamber of Commerce. (2011). Public sector enterprises in India- pursuing the triple bottom line. Accessed Feburary 16, 2014, from https://www.google.com.au/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=fZ5iVZ71DcGN8QeIs4CoAQ#newwindow=1&q=Public+sector+enterprises+in+India++Pursuing+the+triple+bottom+line.

  • Department of Public Enterprises. (2012). DPE CSR guidelines. Retrieved September 12, 2012, from http://www.dpe.nic.in/important_links/dpe_guidelines.

  • Dhanesh, G. S. (2012). Better stay single? Public relations and CSR leadership in India. Public Relations Review, 38(1), 141–143.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Dhanesh, G. S. (2014). Why corporate social responsibility? An analysis of drivers of CSR in India. Management Communication Quarterly, 29(1), 114–129.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Farneti, F., & Guthrie, J. (2009). Sustainability reporting by Australian public sector organisations: Why they report. Accounting Forum, 33(2), 89–98.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Finance Minister on the occasion of presentation of the India Pride Awards instituted by the Dainik Bhaskar Group on 13th September 2010. Available at http://taxguru.in/income-tax/government-committed-to-give-public-sector-enterprises-the-flexibility-and-autonomy-to-operate-effectively-in-a-competit.html.

  • Glennie, M., & Lodhia, S. (2013). The influence of internal organisational factors on corporatecommunity partnership agendas: An Australian case study. Meditari Accountancy Research, 21(1), 52–67.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Gowda, H. (2013). The evolution of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in India. Indian Streams Research Journal, 3, 5.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gray, R., Dillard, J., & Spence, C. (2009). Social accounting research as if the world matters: An essay in Postalgia and a new absurdism. Public Management Review, 11(5), 545–573.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Gray, R., Kouhy, R., & Lavers, S. (1995). Methodological themes: Constructing a research database of social and environmental reporting by UK companies. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, 8(2), 78–101.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Guthrie, J., & Parker, L. D. (1989). Corporate social reporting: A rebuttal of legitimacy theory. Accounting and business research., 19(76), 343–352.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Guthrie, J., & Parker, L. D. (1990). Corporate social disclosure practice: A comparative international analysis. Advances in Public Interest Accounting, 3, 159–175.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hackston, D., & Milne, M. J. (1996). Some determinants of social and environmental disclosures in New Zealand companies. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 9(1), 77–108.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Haniffa, R. M., & Cooke, T. E. (2002). Culture, corporate governance and disclosure in Malaysian corporations. Abacus, 38(3), 317–349.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hegde, P., Bloom, R., & Fuglister, J. (1997). Social financial reporting in India a case. The International Journal of Accounting, 32(2), 155–172.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hooks, J., & van Staden, C. J. (2011). Evaluating environmental disclosures: The relationship between quality and extent measures. The British Accounting Review, 43(3), 200–213.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hughes, S. B., Anderson, A., & Golden, S. (2001). Corporate environmental disclosures: Are they useful in determining environmental performance? Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, 20(3), 217–240.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Jain, S. C., Sen, D. K., Khan, M., & Bala, S. K. (2007). An analytical study on social responsibility performance evaluation as an accounting measure of management efficiency. AI & SOCIETY, 21(3), 251–266.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Jamali, D. (2008). A stakeholder approach to corporate social responsibility: A fresh perspective into theory and practice. Journal of Business Ethics, 82(1), 213–231.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Joshi, M., Sidhu, J., & Kansal, M. (2013). Corporate social disclosures in the knowledge-based sector in an emerging economy. Corporate Ownership and Control, 10(3), 237–249.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kansal, M., & Joshi, M. (2014). Perceptions of investors and stockbrokers on corporate social responsibility: A stakeholder perspective from India. Knowledge and Process Management, 21(3), 167–176.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kansal, M., Joshi, M., & Batra, G. S. (2014). Determinants of corporate social responsibility disclosures: Evidence from India. Advances in Accounting, 30(1), 217–229.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kansal, M., & Singh, S. (2012). Measurement of corporate social performance: An Indian perspective. Social Responsibility Journal, 8(4), 527–546.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Khan, A., Muttakin, M. B., & Siddiqui, J. (2013). Corporate governance and corporate social responsibility disclosures: Evidence from an emerging economy. Journal of Business Ethics, 114(2), 207–223.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kulkarni, A. R. (2014). A review of concept and reporting of non-financial initiatives of business organisations. Procedia Economics and Finance, 11, 33–41.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kumar, R., Murphy, D. F., & Balsari, V. (2001). Altered images: The 2001 state of corporate responsibility in India poll. New Delhi: Tata Energy Research Institute.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lin, L. W. (2010). Corporate social responsibility in China: Window dressing or structural change. Berkeley Journal of International Law, 28(1), 64.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lodhia, S., Jacobs, K., & Park, Y. J. (2012). Driving public sector environmental reporting: The disclosure practices of Australian Commonwealth departments. Public Management Review, 14(5), 631–647.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Luo, L., Tang, Q., & Lan, Y. C. (2013). Comparison of propensity for carbon disclosure between developing and developed countries: A resource constraint perspective. Accounting Research Journal., 26(1), 6–34.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Mahadevappa, B., Rechanna, S., & Shankarappa, S. (2012). Corporate social reporting practices in India. Accessed January 10, 2015, from http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1017&context=acsear2012.

  • Marcuccio, M., & Steccolini, I. (2005). Social and environmental reporting in local authorities: A new Italian fashion? Public Management Review., 7(2), 155–176.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Mayo, E. (2011). Co-operative performance. Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, 2(1), 158–164.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Menassa, E. (2010). Corporate social responsibility: An exploratory study of the quality and extent of social disclosures by Lebanese commercial banks. Journal of Applied Accounting Research, 11(1), 4–23.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Moerman, L., & Van Der Laan, S. (2005). Social reporting in the tobacco industry: All smoke and mirrors? Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 18(3), 374–389.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Mukherjee, K., Sen, M., & Pattanayak, J. K. (2010). Firm characteristics and corporate environmental disclosure practices in India. IUP Journal of Accounting Research & Audit Practices, 9(4), 24.

    Google Scholar 

  • Murray, A., Sinclair, D., Power, D., & Gray, R. (2006). Do financial markets care about social and environmental disclosure? Further evidence and exploration from the UK. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 19(2), 228–255.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Murthy, V., & Abeysekera, I. (2008). Corporate social reporting practices of top Indian software firms. Australasian Accounting Business and Finance Journal, 2(1), 36–59.

    Google Scholar 

  • Muttakin, M. B., & Khan, A. (2014). Determinants of corporate social disclosure: Empirical evidence from Bangladesh. Advances in Accounting, 30(1), 168–175.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Narwal, M. (2007). CSR initiatives of Indian banking industry. Social Responsibility Journal, 3(4), 49–60.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Narwal, M., & Singh, R. (2013). Corporate social responsibility practices in India: A comparative study of MNCs and Indian companies. Social Responsibility Journal, 9(3), 465–478.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • NTPC. (2012). Annual Report. Available at http://www.ntpc.co.in/annual-reports/1219/download-completeannual-report-2012-13-2012.

  • Osborne, S. P., & Ball, A. (2010). Social accounting and public management: Accountability for the public good. London: Routledge.

    Google Scholar 

  • Parker, C. M., Bellucci, E., & Torlina, L. (2014). Towards a method for measuring the quality of environmental improvement communications on SME websites. Knowledge and Process Management, 21(3), 187–197.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Porwal, L., & Sharma, N. (1991). Social responsibility disclosure by Indian companies. The Chartered Accountant, 39(8), 630–635.

    Google Scholar 

  • Prado-Lorenzo, J. M., Gallego-Alvarez, I., & Garcia-Sanchez, I. M. (2009). Stakeholder engagement and corporate social responsibility reporting: the ownership structure effect. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management, 16(2), 94–107.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • PWC. (2013). Handbook on Corporate Social Responsibility in India. Available at www.pwc.in/…/handbook-on-corporate-social-responsibility-in-india.pdf.

  • Ramamurti, R. (1987). Performance evaluation of state-owned enterprises in theory and practice. Management Science, 33(7), 876–893.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Roberts, R. W. (1992). Determinants of corporate social responsibility disclosure: An application of stakeholder theory. Accounting, Organisations and Society, 17(6), 595–612.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Sangle, S. (2010). Critical success factors for corporate social responsibility: A public sector perspective. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management, 17(4), 205–214.

    Google Scholar 

  • Savage, A. A. (1994). Corporate social disclosure practices in South Africa: A research note. Social and Environmental Accounting, 14(1), 2–4.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Schaltegger, S., Gibassier, D., & Zvezdov, D. (2013). Is environmental management accounting a discipline? A bibliometric literature review. Meditari Accountancy Research, 21(1), 4–31.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Sen, M., Mukherjee, K., & Pattanayak, J. (2011). Corporate environmental disclosure practices in India. Journal of Applied Accounting Research, 12(2), 139–156.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Sharma, B. (2013). Contextualising CSR in Asia: Corporate social responsibility in Asian economies. Accessed April 8, 2016, from http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/lien_reports/5/.

  • Sharma, S., Sharma, J., & Devi, A. (2009). Corporate social responsibility: The key role of human resources management. Business Intelligence Journal, 2(1), 205–213.

    Google Scholar 

  • Singh, D., & Ahuja, J. (1983). Corporate social reporting in India. International Journal of Accounting, 18(2), 151–169.

    Google Scholar 

  • Singh, S., & Kansal, M. (2011). Voluntary disclosures of intellectual capital: An empirical analysis. Journal of Intellectual Capital, 12(2), 301–318.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Steel Authority of India Limited. (2012). Annual Report. Available at https://www.sail.co.in/sites/default/files/areport-2011-12.pdf.

  • Subramaniam, N., Kansal, M., & Babu, S. (2015). Governance of mandated corporate social responsibility: Evidence from Indian government-owned firms. Journal of Business Ethics, 1–21. doi:10.1007/s10551-015-2804-0.

  • Tewari, R. (2011). Communicating corporate social responsibility in annual reports: A comparative study of Indian companies & multi-national corporations. Journal of Management & Public Policy, 2(2), 22–51.

    Google Scholar 

  • The Comptroller and Auditor General of India. (2013). Corporate social responsibility, Union Government (Commercial) No. 2, Chapter 6, pp 91-94. Available at: http://saiindia.gov.in/english/home/Our_Products/Audit_Report/Government_Wise/union_audit/recent_reports/union_compliance/2013/Commercial/Report_2/Chap_6.pdf.

  • Tilling, M. V., & Tilt, C. A. (2010). The edge of legitimacy: Voluntary social and environmental reporting in Rothmans’ 1956–1999 annual reports. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 23(1), 55–81.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Vasal, V. (1995). A spatio-temporal analysis on social reporting by companies—Evidence from Indian public sector. Journal of Accounting and Finance, 9(2), 192–216.

    Google Scholar 

  • Waagstein, P. R. (2011). The mandatory corporate social responsibility in Indonesia: Problems and implications. Journal of Business Ethics, 98(3), 455–466.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Yekini, K., & Jallow, K. (2012). Corporate community involvement disclosures in annual report: A measure of corporate community development or a signal of CSR observance? Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, 3(1), 7–32.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Yin, J., & Zhang, Y. (2012). Institutional dynamics and corporate social responsibility (CSR) in an emerging country context: Evidence from China. Journal of Business Ethics, 111(2), 301–316.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Yuthas, K., Rogers, R., & Dillard, J. F. (2002). Communicative action and corporate annual reports. Journal of Business Ethics, 41(1–2), 141–157.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Zeghal, D., & Ahmed, S. A. (1990). Comparison of social responsibility information disclosure media used by Canadian firms. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 3(1), 38–53.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Mahesh Joshi.

Appendix

Appendix

See Tables 10 and 11.

Table 10 Growth of Investment in CPSE’s.
Table 11 List of CPSEs included in the Sample.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Kansal, M., Joshi, M., Babu, S. et al. Reporting of Corporate Social Responsibility in Central Public Sector Enterprises: A Study of Post Mandatory Regime in India. J Bus Ethics 151, 813–831 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-016-3253-0

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-016-3253-0

Keywords

  • CSR disclosures
  • CSR activities
  • Central public sector enterprises
  • India