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An investigation of the social disclosures within the European apparel industry: With reference to the Global Reporting Initiative
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Business Administration.
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Business Administration.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Purpose - The purpose of this study is to conduct an exploratory research in the field of CSR and observe how companies within the apparel industry in the European Union work with CSR, more specifically the social aspects of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). Furthermore there will be an investigation regarding the extent to which organizations within the apparel industry have developed their CSR activities to counter social issues.

Background and problem – Corporate social responsibility is in a majority of the organizations in today’s society, no matter what industry that is investigated, integrated in a great part of their operations. The GRI provide voluntary guidelines regarding sustainability reporting and is today the most used standard for this purpose amongst organizations. Ever since the 1990s when the apparel industry was exposed to the society with the use of sweatshops in developing countries, CSR work and disclosures has advanced within this sector. This, along with other scandals exposed to the society through media, forced organizations within the apparel industry to undertake CSR work and improved disclosures to regain the lost trust and legitimacy of the whole sector.

Method – In order to fulfill the purpose and answer the questions derived from it, a mixed-model research strategy has been applied. The sample consists of 19 organizations within the apparel industry that has been chosen upon specific requirements, and the data has been collected through their public sustainability and annual reports. Further on, to analyze the collected information the concept of content analysis has been used during this thesis. Lastly, a scoreboard has been conducted along with other tables to provide a thorough overview of the findings.

Empirical findings and conclusion – A majority of the sampled organizations have increased their level of compliance with the social part of the GRI guideline during the investigated time span (2011-2015). However, all organizations have either a detached sustainability report, or a sustainability sector in their annual reports, and thus disclosures regarding the issue. The most reported on issue was the Human Rights issues, aligning with the literature on the subject stating that human rights issues has been the largest concern within the apparel industry. In conclusion, the disclosures and work to counteract social issues is steadily experiencing a growth within the apparel industry, which demonstrates an increasing awareness of the actual issues in the area.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , 77 p.
Keyword [en]
GRI, CSR, Social Category, Social Disclosures, Sustainability Reporting, Apparel Industry
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-35774ISRN: JU-IHH-FÖA-2-20170484OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-35774DiVA: diva2:1105408
Subject / course
IHH, Business Administration
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-06-27 Created: 2017-06-03 Last updated: 2017-06-27Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
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  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • text
  • asciidoc
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