Carrolls Pyramid Of Corporate Community Responsibility Model Accounting Essay

In the past, the common perception of a business responsibility was to maximize their firm’s profit. It is because businesses were perceived to often put the shareholder passions first. However, companies are moving towards impacting the socials and conditions. Several research have discovered that businesses now have direct responsibilities to many other stakeholders which include protecting against the harm of human being rights and ensuring that there are solutions obtainable if abuses take place (Smith, Wokutch, Harrington, and Dennis, 2001).

The modern perspective of business responsibility demands companies to help in problems relating to public welfare. As organizations haven’t any utmost responsibility for these distressing situations, philanthropic responsibilities remain not mandatory. However, because of a decrease of social institutions offering help to the communities, persons have higher goals towards company and think that they should be a part of filling up the shortages (Carroll, 1979). Carroll offers proposed a CSR concept, which states the corporations’ 4 business obligations – (i) economical, (ii) Legal, (iii) Ethical, and (iv) Discretionary (as proven in diagram 1). These four elements are complementary to one another (not mutually exclusive).

Diagram 1: Carroll’s Pyramid of Corporate Social Responsibility Model

Source: Chaisurivirat, 2009. THE RESULT of Corporate Public Responsibility: Exploring the Relationship among CSR, Attitude toward the Brand, Order Intention, and Persuasion Know-how.

The financial and legal responsibilities are the basic and essential factor in a business. There are many researches done to help expand enhance the importance of the elements (Jamali and Mirshak, 2006). Basically, economical responsibility is comparable to the original view of a organization role; which is to increase the firm’s profit because of their shareholders. Carroll (1979) mentioned that business itself is an economic unit to the culture. In addition, responsibility is where companies are required to obey the regulations set by the federal government or respected authorities.

The conventional profit-maximizing check out explored in Albert Carr’s article “Is Business Bluffing Ethical” (Velentzas and Broni, 2010). Carr stated that making money out of something may be the businesses main role. Organization is said to be such as a poker game, whereby company are to “play” within the group of rules of the game (Carr, 1968). Those who do not comply will not be successful within their business. The duty that they had towards staff members and shareholders surpasses the various other moral obligation provided that it does not go against regulations (Carr, 1968).

Besides that, Milton Friedman’s also explained that it’s essential for a firm to increase the revenues of a shareholder by overcoming all of the environmental challenges (Cheers, 2011). Similarly, Friedman (1970) reemphasize that, “There is one and only one social responsibility of business is by using its resources and take part in activities designed to increase its profit as long as it remains within the guideline of the overall game”. This could be additionally supported by a circumstance of Dodge v. Ford Engine Enterprise (Cheers, 2011). The Ford founder, Henry Ford aims to supply Ford vehicle for everyone by reducing the purchase price. The shareholders were dissatisfied and claimed that the business should not make a profit-lessening decision. Courtroom held that companies are generally to bring revenue to the shareholders. The company should not exercise any choices that will bring disadvantage to the shareholders.

However, nowadays, the perception of a organization role has changed. The firms concern shouldn’t include just the shareholders, but also other functions or entities that might be influenced by the organization’s action, which refers to stakeholders (Fassin, 2008). Freeman (2012) described “stakeholders as (i) persons or institutions that are afflicted by the organization action, methods and decisions and in addition (ii) those who are linked to the success of the organization”. Firms are anticipated to transform the revenue maximization mindset to trusteeships or “multifiduciary stakeholders’ principle”, whereby the business role is now to achieve equilibrium among the stakeholders fascination by avoiding undertaking any injury to any individuals or organizations (Goodpaster and Mathews, 1982).

In addition, Carroll released the ethical and philanthropic responsibility. Carroll’s ethical element identifies the society’s point of view of an excellent behavior (Carroll, 1979). Corporation must comply with the rules and regulation collection while operating. Moreover, it also contains the norms or targets that are not written in law; put simply, the moral worth and rights (Carroll, 1991). Furthermore, companies are obligated to do something voluntarily beyond their business scope and rational ethical functions. This is referred to as the philanthropic responsibility, such as for example organizing or participating in charity event (Carroll, 1979). Bowen (1953) talked about that social and philanthropic responsibility would provide as a guideline for the business in the future.

Nowadays, most businesses believe they must be more social in charge towards the world and environment and therefore, criticisms arises over the traditional perspective. For example, some critics disagreed that business is a game, since it is a needed component in the culture. Besides that, the competitions between different businesses are involuntary, which would involve and influence a great many other stakeholders, such as for example government and local communities (Kirkpatrick, 2002). Accordingly, institutions are said to be accountable to the stakeholders. They need to repay to the contemporary society for what they have done and thus, provide reasonable explanation to the stakeholders.

Accountability vs Accounting

According to Blagescu, Casas, and Lloyd (2005), accountability is the “processes through which an organization makes a committed action to respond to and balance the needs of stakeholders in its decision-making processes and activities, and offers against this commitment”. As stated before, today’s corporations likewise have duties to other stakeholders, like the society. Therefore, corporations contain the obligation to come to be accountable to those stakeholders (Brennan and Solomon, 2008). An accountability framework, Global Accountability Project (GAP) (as demonstrated in diagram 2), was developed by One Environment Trust with a purpose of generating wider determination to the ideals and principles of accountability among global agencies (Blagescu,, 2005). Regarding GAR, it is usually seen that they have indeed put in efforts to improve their accountability with their stakeholders, especially in relation to social and environmental aspects.

Diagram 2 Global Accountability Project (GAP) Framework

Source: Blagescu, Casas, and Lloyd (2005). Pathways to Accountability: The GAP Framework.

According to GAP framework, there are four dimensions that are important for increasing and evaluating accountability of institutions. First may be the transparency. Transparency is normally that stakeholder can usage of credible and timely details about the organization’s functions (Blagescu,, 2005). To be transparent, corporations must do more than merely disclose commonly standardized data. Quite simply, it needs to supply more valuable and needed information for the stakeholders for decision-making. Organizations should be focusing on the caliber of the information disclosed, rather than the quantity (Hassan and Marston, 2010). GAR disclosed important information for their stakeholders. For example, they announce that they will partner with TFT for forest conservation while establishing shareholders’ value (Golden Agri Solutions Ltd, 2011b). The second dimension is normally participation. It means that the businesses allow those major stakeholders to be involved in the decision-making procedure and activities which would influence them (Blagescu,, 2005). GAR does accomplish their accountability obligation in this dimension. They have been working hard to engage with their stakeholders, such as for example their customer, Nestle, so that you can enhance the performances (Harvey, 2011).

Furthermore, analysis is another essential part of organization’s accountability. It involves the evaluation and monitoring of both final results and the ongoing progress of the organizations’ activities (Blagescu,, 2005). This dimension performs two significant functions in accountability. It studies the performances against expectations after an event so as to supply crucial details to stakeholders; it also boosts accountability by learning and raising organizational responsiveness to stakeholders (McKenna, 1983). Actually, GAR’s performances in relation to sustainability development will be evaluated and monitored by few external independent organizations, such as Greenpeace (Harvey, 2011). On top of that, the dimension of complain and response mechanisms can be for both companies and stakeholders to seek and obtain feedbacks from one another in order to maximize accountability (Blagescu,, 2005). For instance, GAR considers the responses of clients, such as Nestle (Harvey, 2011).

Although the interpretations of accountability are incredibly wide and are limited only by imagination, accountability is constantly found to have got links with the provision and receipt of monetary information in many accounting literatures (Narasimha Rao and Raghavendra, 2011). As a result of rapid climate modification, undeniably, accounting and the environment are no longer mutually exclusive (Andrew, 2001). Actually, accounting had always been treated as only a technique used to provide financial details for stakeholders (Bushman and Smith, 2001). Normally, people will assume that the accounting information is merely financial. However, today’s accounting concept should also include some green problems so as to increase organizations’ transparency (Andrew, 2001). Besides, accounting system may also help the stakeholders in analyzing the organizational performances as it could supply them with relevant info (Perrini and Tencati, 2006). It is not surprising that accounting can actually be used to increase corporations’ accountability. Overall, increasing accountability is very important to organizations, including GAR.

GAR was required to increase their amount of accountability, especially to those external crucial stakeholders. It is because According to The Straits Occasions (2010), GAR had deforested illegally before in Indonesia. As a way to meet the targets of the stakeholders, GAR began to be dedicated in the conservation of forests and peatlands in Indonesia. There are two main actions taken by GAR to take action. Firstly, GAR features signed a forest-conservation contract with TFT, a non-government organization (NGO). Likewise, GAR starts to disclose their cultural and environmental performances in twelve-monthly report (Golden Agri Resources Ltd, 2011b). GAR posted their inaugural sustainability article in 2011, after their illegal deforestation activity was found out to the world (The Straits Times, 2010). All these signals indicate that GAR can be bowing to the pressure from the NGOs and exterior stakeholders (Harvey, 2011). In fact, there are a few conceptual theories which could offer an explanation for the sudden changes made by GAR.

These organizational practices adjustments in GAR could be explained employing Legitimacy Theory. This theory asserts that businesses seek to make sure that their activities and functions are perceived to be legitimate by the world and stakeholders (Deegan, 2011). Legitimate could possibly be said as a public construct predicated on cultural norms for organizations’ behaviors (Suchman, 1995). As a result, organizations need to be focused on the social contract between the companies and the contemporary society to get recognition. Social contract could be roughly thought as the implicit and explicit anticipations that the society has on the organizations (Deegan, 2011).

In fact, failing woefully to commit to the social contract would be regarded as not legitimate, and eventually provides negative impacts to the companies, such as difficult to acquire resources and supports from the society to continue the operations. Therefore, legitimacy is an essential component for the corporations as it is recognized as a important intangible resource which businesses rely on as a way to survive (O’Donovan, 2002). Corporations could actually set up their legitimacy by details disclosures (Suchman, 1995). Through the disclosure of info in relation to social and environmental functionality, the business would gain the society’s trust. Consequently, it will be beneficial to the company in ways, such as for example improving company’s reputation and establish competitive advantages (Porter and Kramer, 2006). Subsequently, GAR’s alterations their organizational practice by beginning the publication of sustainability survey.

Besides that, Stakeholder Theory could also

be used to get an understanding of why GAR responds to NGOs in this manner. Among the branches of Stakeholder Theory, ethical point of view, adopts a normative job; that organizations should consider the rights and interest of all stakeholders, irrespective of their powers and influences on the business (Deegan, 2011). Relating to Freeman and Reed (1983), stakeholders happen to be any get-togethers that are affected by the organizations’ procedures. Usually, organizations would try to meet the stakeholders’ expectations and be accountable to them by providing and disclosing organizational details (Gray, Kouhy, and Lavers, 1995). Therefore, it really is believed that this could be one of the explanations why GAR alters their organizational practice.

Undeniably, bowing to the pressure from stakeholders is a good start for GAR. Committing to CSR, disclosing cultural and environmental performance data, and being extra accountable are indeed good for GAR themselves and in addition their stakeholders. Additionally it is important to note that accountability and transparency are among the essential factors in improving the organizations’ sustainability advancement (Global Public Coverage Institute, 2005). Sustainability development is generally thought as to “meet up with the needs of the present without compromising the power of future generations to meet up their own needs” (Universe Commission on Environment and Development, 1987).

Golden-Agri Information Ltd (GAR)’s Sustainability Report

Currently, there is no any legal regulation or regulation says that organizations have to disclose their interpersonal and environmental aspects. Nevertheless, voluntary disclosures would carry favorable impacts to both internal and external stakeholders. Therefore, many corporations start making voluntary disclosures, thus does GAR (Cheynel, 2012). Actually, GAR published their inaugural sustainability record for an objective of offering the stakeholders a much better understanding of the company’s priorities, performances, and stakeholder engagement process (Golden Agri Assets Ltd, 2011b). GAR’s sustainability report’s common was assessed at software level B, predicated on an internationally established reporting framework (revealed in diagram 3) produced by Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) (Golden Agri Solutions Ltd, 2011c). This framework was designed to provide organizations with a couple of principles for defining article content and ensuring the caliber of the reported information (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000).

Diagram 3 Global Reporting Iniative (GRI) Framework

Source: Global Reporting Initiative, Sustainability Reporting Guidelines (

Diagram 4 Global Reportive Initiative (GRI) Concepts for Reporting

Source: Institut fur Wirtschaftsinformatik, GRI Principles (

According to the GRI’s framework, there will be 4 guidelines (Materiality, Stakeholder Inclusiveness, Sustainability Context, and Completeness) (found in diagram 4) for defining the how to make a thesis report content material (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000). The materiality theory requires corporations to address the most important and concerning issues to their stakeholders. The major current concerning concern for GAR and their stakeholders is definitely deforestation in Indonesia (Harvey, 2011). The reason being GAR possessed cleared the forests illegally before in Indonesia, as mentioned before. Furthermore, this deforestation act is definitely destroying the livelihood of the habitat right now there. The stakeholders, such as Indonesia government, local communities, and also those NGOs are subsequently showing their concerns on this issue badly (Harvey, 2011). In GAR’s sustainability statement, it centered on disclosing details about policies of preventing deforestation. For example, they state that they might have a no-deforestation footprint in Indonesian rainforest by partnering with NGO, TFT to launch Forest Conservation Coverage (FCP) (Golden Agri Methods Ltd, 2011b). Overall, it really is believed that the record content is fairly material. Furthermore, GAR’s sustainability statement does fulfill the basic principle of stakeholder inclusiveness. Among the main disclosures is their multi-stakeholder engagement method (Golden Agri Means Ltd, 2011b). For illustrations, engaging NGOs, customers, and local communities to address the passions those stakeholders have so that you can achieve their anticipations and sustainability development.

Moreover, the underlying problem of a sustainability report is how organizations plan to contribute later on to improve economic, environmental, and social developments at both regional and global level (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000). That is related to the basic principle of sustainability context. The record discloses that GAR is certainly committed to a holistic methodology towards sustainability, since it is definitely looking at solutions to increase productivity while reducing bad impacts on its terrain. Among its sustainability guidelines, Yield Improvement Insurance plan (YIP), is targeted on plantation control and terrain suitability (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000). This demonstrates GAR’s voluntary disclosures do meet the requirement of sustainability context. Besides that, the info GAR discloses includes all significant activities or occasions within the reporting period; which fulfills the basic principle of completeness. However, it usually is seen in the report that data and statistics relating to to environment and sustainability performances happen to be insufficient. Furthermore, there is bound alignment between the sustainability report and overall business strategy. Lack of all these details could have an effect on the completeness of the report (KPMG, 2008).

Apart from the content aspect, the quality of the sustainability report is also an important element. Equilibrium, comparability, timeliness, accuracy, and reliability are the 5 principles used to check the report top quality (shown in diagram 4). GAR’s report will not really meet the balance principle as they mostly disclose favorable areas of the organization’s performance while there is insufficient unfavorable results and matters. This may affect stakeholders’ assessment and decision building adversely. Besides that, the comparability principle is certainly irrelevant to the article as this is the inaugural sustainability survey for GAR. So, it cannot be used by the stakeholders to compare with its past performance (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000). Apart from these, the record does meet the accuracy and reliability theory. Qualitative statements in the survey are valid only when it is predicated on the basis of other reported info and evidences (Global Reporting Initiative, 2000). GAR does indeed provide additional evidences and information to boost the accuracy and stability of their reviews. Overall, GAR’s sustainability statement is believed to have fulfilled the reporting regular requirements established by GRI. Nevertheless, the quality of the report can be improved upon through the compliance of accounting requirements.

Accounting Standards

Accounting benchmarks (AS) are defined as a policy set by authorities such as accounting body, government or regulatory body to modify the accounting transactions in the financial statement (The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, 2011). As globalization emerges, the business enterprise world realizes the value of having a common regular in the financial factor. A survey carried out by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) shows that majority of the leaders from accounting fields support the thought of having common international criteria as part of economic growth (Private Organization Financial Report, 2008). Therefore, the International Accounting Normal Board (IASB) produced the International Financial Reporting Regular (IFRS) (Cellucci, 2011).

IFRS aims to provide as a regulation for personal reporting which may be exercised equally across the world (Ball, 2006). Among the advantages of IFRS is that it provides a principle-based mostly framework with better quality. In addition, there happen to be lesser regulation and exception when compared with the other standards such as for example General Accepted Accounting Theory. By adopting IFRS, a far more professional judgment has been introduced which really helps to reduce the risk faced by the company. There is also even more transparency in the financial transactions (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2007).

However, the Reliability and Exchange Commission (SEC) states that the expectations in IFRS are extremely inadequate compare for some accounting standards (Cellucci, 2011). For example, the General Accepted Accounting Principle (GAAP) is considered to be the gold standard in US (Exclusive Company Financial Report, 2008). The Staff’s interpretation of GAAP includes some disclosures of environmental concerns on contingent liabilities. This is to recognize the contingent losses and to acknowledge the various accounting methods and disclosure on contingent liability (Roberts, 1995). Even so, IASB reported that environmental issues reporting are not within the scope of IFRS (Yara C, Nelson, and Bruna, 2008). So, it demonstrates IFRS are still not compatible with other requirements like GAAP in the sociable and environment accounting aspect (Center for Audit Quality, 2009).

Besides that, there are numerous studies which reported there are limitations in the position of accounting standards. This includes ensuring the reporting top quality as well as the emphasis on the firm’s incentive in reporting (Ball, Kothari, and Robin, 1998; Ball, Robin, and Joanna, 2002; Leuz, 2003; Ball and Shivakumar, 2004). The application of the accounting standards entails significant judgments and usage of private data. As a result, substantial discretion is provided by any accounting requirements to a company. However, the caliber of the way the persuasive topics for speech firm behaves depends upon the incentive in reporting, including the industry forces and legal institutions (Daske, Hail, Leuz, and Verdi, 2008). The establishments have the proper to choose the information that they would like to disclose. Hence, an accounting regular for better sustainable production should meet the wants of the users by encouraging feedbacks and comments.

Similarly to various other accounting standards, IFRS do not record all the effect of financial action (SIGMA, 2003). For instance, externalities, like the costs and gain which usually do not affect the organization directly, are not contained in the financial studies. Costs and benefit ought to be included to provide a better market-based decision making (SIGMA, 2003). For example, the emission of petrol will cause climate changes and polluting of the environment. These consequences are considered as the original cost to the world in today’s and future. Even so, these costs are not reflected in the fuel price. Positive externalities are the ones that would be good for the society. This demonstrates the present accounting standard doesn’t have sufficient regulation that allows the firms to relate with the sustainable development aspect.

For a company to attain sustainable development, you need to balance the economic, public and environmental impacts within their decision-making. This includes the analysis of the positive and negative impacts of the three dimensions on policy alterations, and determining the outcomes which would profit one get together and harm the other parties along with the proper precaution steps to reduce negative impact (Bebbington, 2000). The analysis on earlier principles focuses more on economic affect (Kirkpatrick, George, and Curran, 2001). Rio Principle 4 states that it’s essential for environmental feature to be integrated as part of the development process while Firm for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) theory 3 recognized the value of integrating the 3 dimension policy and purpose (Janeiro, 1992).

Overall, the existing accounting criteria are inadequate in maintaining a company’s sustainable creation. Therefore, many efforts have been done to integrate the financial, social and environment plan. For instance, Global Reporting Initiative, the United Nations Principles for Responsible Purchase, Global Initiative for Sustainable Score and others have already been created. This shows that our current standards aren’t competent to ensure companies, such as GAR, to commit to sustainability development. Therefore, Sustainability Accounting Standards Plank (SASB) is introduced to produce sustainable accounting expectations for the users (Deloitte, 2012). This includes the disclosures of sustainability issues which allow investors and open public to have a better decision making. The SASB produced a Sustainable Market Classification System (SICS) to produce a sustainable accounting expectations that suits different industry (Deloitte, 2012).

As a conclusion, aside from profit maximization, corporations play a major role locally. Organizations also needs to disclose cultural and environmental factors within their financial reports. Thus, GAR is kept accountable to the Indonesian forests and peats and all the stakeholders. They should maintain environmental disclosure within their economic reporting for all stakeholders. Nevertheless, besides GAR, the regulators and professional bodies also play a large role in ensuring companies to be more committed to sustainable development. This is often done by creating sufficient sustainable accounting standards for the corporations.