Research Topic

Holistic Interconnections in Sustainability Reporting

About this Research Topic

Sustainability reporting (SR) encourages all types of organizations (civil society, businesses, and public sector ones) to assess and communicate their economic, environmental, and social impacts. It also enables organizations to benchmark against other organizations, support change processes, assess their ...

Sustainability reporting (SR) encourages all types of organizations (civil society, businesses, and public sector ones) to assess and communicate their economic, environmental, and social impacts. It also enables organizations to benchmark against other organizations, support change processes, assess their performance over time, and dialogue with stakeholders about their sustainability impacts.

Although various types of sustainability management and reporting tools have been developed over the years (e.g., ISO 14000, GRI Sustainability Reporting Guidelines, IIRC Integrated Reporting Framework, SASB Materiality Map, ISO 26000), the voluntary basis of sustainability or non-financial reporting causes different challenges, such as: (i) there is no common reporting method; (ii) different indicators are used to present various sustainability outputs; (iii) there is a lack of interlinkages between different aspects and indicators; and (iv) there is no universal legal framework for reporting. As a result, it is difficult to benchmark organizations in relation to their size or sector, and there is limited research on how the sustainability dimensions inter-connect.

Against the background of these challenges, this Research Topic is aimed at providing novel contributions on SR. The Research Topic is focused more specifically on holistic approaches to sustainability reporting, through the use of inter-connections between the traditional reporting dimensions.

The topics of interest for this special issue include (but are not limited to):
• What are the interconnections between the sustainability dimensions and issues and how can they be assessed?
• How can interconnected and regular indicators be used for better decision-making?
• What is the role of third parties in the assessment of the interconnections in sustainability reporting?
• What is the role of the integrated reporting framework in providing interconnections in sustainability or non-financial reporting?
• What is the role of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in providing interconnections in sustainability reporting?
• How do EU policy reforms on non-financial disclosure and new standards on corporate sustainability reporting modify the playing field for EU companies?
• Which approaches to holistic sustainability reporting could be taken up by organizations, depending on their size, type, ownership structure, or sector?
• What can be learnt from comparing and analysing the differences/similarities between them?
• How can interconnecting indicators be used for benchmarking against other organizations?
• How could materiality affect or be affected by the use of interconnecting indicators?


We welcome conceptual and empirical contributions (quantitative and qualitative studies) from around the globe, addressing recent advances in sustainability reporting and bearing in mind the holistic approach that would enable multi-scaling of sustainability on a micro and macro level.


Keywords: sustainable organization, sustainability reporting, sustainability indicators, sustainability assessment, benchmarking of sustainability, integrated reporting, Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), interlinking indicators, stakeholder engagement


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

26 January 2021 Manuscript
22 March 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

26 January 2021 Manuscript
22 March 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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