Sustainability reporting and performance management in universities

Carol Alison Adams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

137 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This article aims to provide a perspective on sustainability reporting and performance management in the university sector making a case for increased accountability, improved (management of) performance and greater innovation in approach. Design/methodology/approach: The author provides a personal perspective drawing on experience in sustainability standard setting and as a sustainability researcher, advisor and practitioner in the university sector and others. Findings: The paper finds that university practice in sustainability reporting and performance management significantly lags other sectors and falls far short of optimising the potential of the sector to influence transformational change through knowledge transfer. Research limitations/implications: The paper suggests some areas for further research. Practical implications: This article makes a case for increased sustainability performance management and reporting in universities arguing that it would lead to increased accountability and improved performance. It calls for social, environmental and economic sustainability to integrated into university processes. The paper has implications for university policy makers and regulators. Originality/value: Little attention has been paid to the university sector in the sustainability reporting and social responsibility literature or indeed in recognised standards for sustainability reporting and management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)384 - 392
Number of pages9
JournalSustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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