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Sustainability Reporting from the EU Perspective

Event Type
European Union Center
306 Coble Hall
Apr 9, 2024   2:00 pm  
Originating Calendar
European Union Center Events

The presentation given by Sandra Janković, Ana-Marija Vrtodušić Hrgović and Marinela Krstinić Nižić, professors from the University of Rijeka, Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management, provides an overview of sustainability reporting initiatives in European Union, at both the corporate and destination level. 

The European Union has some of the world’s most advanced, stringent, progressive, and complex sustainability reporting requirements. Under the banner of a European Green Deal, Europe is implementing a series of measures aimed at facing climate change, supporting sustainable innovation, and transforming the EU into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy and the first climate-neutral region by 2050.

To encourage the corporate sector to become more sustainable, the European Commission adopted the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) in November 2022. It aims to make corporate sustainability reporting more widespread, consistent, and standardized than traditional financial accounting and reporting. The disclosures required by the CSRD are set out in the EU Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS). The ESRS was developed by the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) and adopted by the European Commission on July 31, 2023. It consists of eleven reporting sections and requires all companies to disclose information on the risks and opportunities arising from social and environmental issues, as well as the impact of their activities on people and the environment. This will help investors, civil society organizations, consumers and other stakeholders to assess the sustainability performance of European companies and demonstrate the efforts companies are making to meet the Green Deal agenda. Mandatory sustainability reporting standards serve not only to inform the capital markets, but also to influence corporate culture and behavior. Given the different nature of voluntary and mandatory sustainability reporting, it will provide in the future many new research opportunities and questions in the academic community.

With the aim of encouraging sustainable tourism in the EU, ten years ago the European Commission introduced an indicator system for tourism destinations. The European Tourism Indicator System (ETIS) helps destinations monitor and measure their sustainable tourism performance by using a common, comparable approach, thus helping to improve the sustainable management of destinations. Currently a voluntary management tool, the 2016 edition of the ETIS toolkit contains 43 core indicators divided into four sections: Destination Management, Economic Value, Social and Cultural Impact, Environmental Impact, as well as a number of complementary indicators (e.g. Marine and Coastal Tourism, Accessible Tourism, Transnational Cultural Routes). There are other European Commission initiatives to promote sustainability in tourism, such as the EU Ecolabel. Ecolabel is a voluntary quality label of the European Union for outstanding environmental performance that helps consumers recognize products and services that have a lower environmental impact throughout their life cycle. One of the product groups eligible for Ecolabel designation is vacation accommodation.

About the speakers: 

Sandra Janković is a Professor of Accounting at the University of Rijeka, Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management. She is a co-editor of the journal Tourism and Hospitality Management.

Ana-Marija Vrtodušić Hrgović is a Professor of Quality Management at the University of Rijeka, Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management and is the Vice-Dean for Teaching.

Marinela Krstinić Nižić is a Professor of Sustainable Development at the University of Rijeka, Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management and is the Vice-Dean for Development and Digitalization.

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