The water organisations were found to be reflexively isomorphic, while seeking to align their commercial logic to ‘sustainability’ and ‘ensuring community expectations’ logics to legitimate adoption of EMA.
Originality/value – The paper contributes to the literature by providing case study evidence of the intentions and motivations of management in adopting EMA, and the nature of that adoption process over an extended period.
Design/methodology/approach – The primary research involves case analysis of three companies in the Australian water supply industry, drawing on interviews, internal documents and publicly available documents, including annual reports.
Findings – Two key drivers for the adoption and emergence of EMA are: the emergence of a government regulator in the form of the Essential Services Commission (ESC); and community expectations with regard to environmental performance and disclosure.
Definition EMA is broadly defined as the identification, collection, analysis, dissemination, and use of physical flow information (materials, energy and water flows), environmental cost information, and other monetary information for both conventional and environmental decision-making within an organisation.
This definition of EMA is similar to the definition of conventional management accounting, but has several key differences: Business strategy Design for environment Green marketing Business re-engineering Environmental strategy Business operations Activity based management Total quality management Pollution prevention Product stewardship Perhaps the most compelling reason for practicing environmental accounting is the growing body of evidence indicating that environmental costs can make up a much larger proportion of costs than firms realize.
Further, it provides empirical evidence of the applicability of reflexive isomorphism in the context of EMA and institutional logics.
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It also enabled thehospitals to switch to mercury-free alternatives and Ethylene Oxide minimization. Target Sectors / Stakeholders Businesses, companies have extensively used EMA principles in their accounting systems.
Local governments have also begun to adopt EMA in their public budgets. Scale of Operation Accounting systems in individual companies, businesses, local governments, public utilities etc.