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Corporate adoption of SDG reporting in a non-enabling institutional environment: Insights from Libyan oil industries

Ali Meftah Gerged and Tariq Almontaser

Resources Policy, 2021, vol. 74, issue C

Abstract: Drawing on institutional voids, we examine how corporate engagement in sustainable development goals reporting (SDGR) is influenced by Libya's non-enabling institutional environment post the political change in 2011. Specifically, we examine the impact of national-level SDG performance (NLSP) of 2015 to 2010, as a proxy for the non-enabling institutional environment, on SDGR observed in 2015/2016. This study also explores whether the NLSP-SDGR nexus is contingent on the environmental sensitivity of oil industries in Libya. We employ a quantitative content analysis based on word counts to determine the level of SDGR among a cross-sectional sample of 524 observations of the major Libyan oil companies in the 2015/2016 fiscal year. Using measures derived from the World Development Indicators (WDI), a cross-sectional regression analysis has been employed to investigate how NLSP explains variations in SDGR noted in 2015/2016. Descriptive evidence indicates that Libyan oil companies tend to report SDG information on their websites about Good Health and Well-being (SDG3), Quality Education (SDG4), Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG7), Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG8), Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (SDG9), Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG11), and Responsible Consumption and Production (SDG12). Our regression results suggest that the NLSP positively and significantly influences corporate commitment to the SDGR agenda among a sample of the major oil companies in Libya. Additionally, the environmental sensitivity of oil industries appeared to be moderating the NLSP-SDGR nexus. As SDGR tends to be a self-regulation mechanism, our empirical evidence emphasises the importance of establishing effective regulatory agencies to ensure companies' achievements of their social, environmental, and economic responsibilities efficiently and effectively.

Keywords: Environmental sensitivity; Institutional voids; Libya; National-level SDG Performance; Non-enabling institutional environment; Oil sector; Political change; SDG Reporting (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.resourpol.2021.102240

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