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Social responsibility disclosure: A study of proxies for the public visibility of Portuguese banks

Manuel Branco and Lúcia Lima Rodrigues

The British Accounting Review, 2008, vol. 40, issue 2, 161-181

Abstract: This study, grounded in legitimacy theory (LT), examines social responsibility disclosure (SRD) on the Internet by Portuguese banks in 2004 and 2005. It compares these disclosures with those made in annual reports in 2003 and 2004. According to LT, companies with a higher public visibility are expected to exhibit greater concern to improve the corporate image through SRD. Size and industry affiliation are two of the most popular proxies for public visibility. By using companies from one industry this study explores size-related measures as proxies for public visibility. It analyses several size-related proxies and proposes a measure which has never been discussed in SRD studies: a spatial competition index based on the number of branches. Results suggest that the perspective adopted explains SRD by Portuguese banks and that the new measure proposed should be explored further in SRD empirical research.

Keywords: Annual reports; Internet; Legitimacy theory; Social responsibility disclosure; Portugal (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008
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DOI: 10.1016/

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Handle: RePEc:eee:bracre:v:40:y:2008:i:2:p:161-181