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International Accounting
 

The practice of non-financial reporting: Possible development trajectories

Vol. 24, Iss. 7, JULY 2021

Received: 12 April 2021

Received in revised form: 10 June 2021

Accepted: 1 July 2021

Available online: 15 July 2021

Subject Heading: CORPORATE SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY

JEL Classification: M41

Pages: 781–803

https://doi.org/10.24891/ia.24.7.781

Tat'yana N. SOLOVEI Saint Petersburg State University (SPbSU), Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation
t.solovey@spbu.ru

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7453-297X

Valeriya A. PUCHKOVA Saint Petersburg State University (SPbSU), Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation
st049516@student.spbu.ru

ORCID id: not available

Subject. This article summarizes development trends in non-financial reporting and traces the current problems of its content and qualities.
Objectives. The article aims to indicate key problems of the content and quality of non-financial reporting, referring to the analyzable publications and analytical reviews of corporate practices. It also aims to determine possible regulation areas of non-financial reporting practices as part of the Concept for the Development of Public Non-Financial Reporting in the Russian Federation.
Methods. For the study, we used the methods of detailed description and summary, comparison, analogy, and the logic and systems approaches. We analyzed scientific publication in periodicals and analytical reviews of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, Big Four companies, focusing on the development of non-financial reporting practices.
Results. The article summarizes key problems of non-financial reporting, which are typical of the Russian and foreign companies. We suggest how the regulation of non-financial reporting should be developed in Russia, referring to the European experience and corporate practices. The article provides an analysis of the non-financial reporting quality in twelve Russian companies so as to verify and identify issues of its content and quality.
Conclusions. Businesses do prepare their non-financial reports in compliance with the international standards and initiatives on sustainable development. They often fail to disclose what method they use to select subjects for their reports, reluctantly giving examples of negative effects on the environment or other adverse impact of their operations. The information is not always comparable for accounting periods. Considering the experience of the European countries in the regulation of non-financial reporting, we conclude there should be conceptual principles for non-financial reporting in accordance with international standards and national distinctions.

Keywords: non-financial reporting, quality, reliability, social responsibility, standardization, regulation

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