Sustainability Reporting module (BU40001)

Explore the theory and practice of sustainability accounting and accountability, from the perspective of both corporations and wider stakeholders.

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Module code


This module adopts a critically engaged and socially aware perspective, to understanding developments in sustainability reporting. The module encompasses the broad disciplinary framework of accounting and accountability, and encourages students to undertake independent reading of the related literature.

The module integrates traditional and contemporary theories to better understand the accountability of corporations in relation to wider society, including government, individuals, and pressure groups. The module draws upon, and is applicable to, real-life situations including how information is understood and managed by people within organisations and within wider society.

What you will learn

By the end of the module, you will:

  • Have a general appreciation of the main issues in climate and Earth systems science that inform our understanding of sustainability and sustainable development
  • Have a strong understanding of the concepts and theories underpinning sustainability accounting and accountability
  • Be able to apply these concepts and theories in relation to understanding and critiquing current developments in sustainability reporting

Assignments / assessment

Coursework (100%), comprising:

  • an individual written report (30%)
  • an individual reflective essay (70%)

Teaching methods / timetable

Scheduled teaching consists of weekly in-person lectures and seminars. An indicative outline is as follows:

Week Topics covered
1 Sustainability, climate and biodiversity
2 Corporations and their impact on society and the environment
3 Corporate sustainability reporting history
4 Corporate sustainability reporting practice
5 Theories of corporate sustainability reporting
6 Reading week – no classes
7 Accounting for biodiversity
8 External accounts and activism
9 Guest lecture
10 ESG investing & investor activism
11 Coursework development


This module is available on following courses: