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Corporate social disclosure under isomorphic pressures: evidence from business groups

Published Online:pp 137-164

This paper investigates the relationship between ownership and corporate social disclosure (CSD) with the aim of answering the following research questions: Can the affiliation of listed companies in a wider business group influence their CSD? Do the affiliated listed companies have CSDs similar to each other and/or to their parent company? If the businesses of affiliated listed subsidiaries are unrelated, how much of their CSD can be explained by the industry in which they operate instead of their group affiliation? The multiple case studies analysis developed through a content analysis applied to 13 business groups reveal whether and how the affiliation is influential on CSD. Findings show that the CSD of an entity is strongly affected by affiliation to a business group, both when subsidiaries operate in the same industry as their parent and when, notwithstanding the unrelated business, the directional activity of the parent is particularly significant.


corporate social disclosure, CSD, corporate social responsibility, CSR, business groups, ownership, affiliated subsidiaries, industry type