Strategy disclosure in annual reports across Europe: a study on differences between five countries

S.C. Santema, M. Hoekert, J. Rijt, van de, A. Oijen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose – This article aims to focus on strategy disclosure in annual reports across Europe and to try to establish whether national culture and national corporate governance features have an influence on the extent to which companies disclose their strategy. The research was conducted to fulfil three main purposes: to build a model for measuring strategy disclosure; to find reasons for differences in strategy disclosure across countries; and to test whether there are indeed differences in the extent to which strategy is disclosed. Design/methodology/approach – The extent to which companies disclose their strategy is predicted on the basis of comparative management and corporate governance literature. This prediction is subsequently tested on ten criteria (describing corporate strategy). The empirical results were statistically analysed by using Manova and linear regression. Findings – The main conclusion is drawn that national differences in corporate governance and culture do influence the extent to which companies disclose their corporate strategy. Research limitations/implications – The research sample consists of the annual reports of five European countries. Future research could be extended into a broader sample. Furthermore, possible influence of other elements on the extent to which companies disclose their strategy (besides the control variables already taken into account) could be considered. Practical implications – Practical implications for managers from this conclusion are that, in order to keep the stakeholders satisfied, the company should look at their demands for disclosure when deciding on a strategy for disclosure. Originality/value – The link between national differences and strategy disclosure has not been specified so clearly in the literature before, and therefore can be seen as the largest contribution of this study.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)352-366
JournalEuropean Business Rewiew
Volume17
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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