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RAUSP Management Journal

On-line version ISSN 2531-0488

Abstract

SOARES, Darticléia Almeida Sampaio da Rocha et al. Organizational culture and sustainability in Brazilian electricity companies. RAUSP Manag. J. [online]. 2018, vol.53, n.4, pp.488-506. ISSN 2531-0488.  https://doi.org/10.1108/rausp-07-2018-0038.

Purpose

This paper aims to assess the relationship between cultural profiles and the economic, environmental and social dimensions of electricity companies’ reporting based on the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) sustainability framework.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors used the competing values framework, developed by Cameron and Quinn, as the theoretical starting point, with primary data collected through surveys that assessed organizational culture and with secondary data collected through the GRI indicators reported by the companies.

Findings

First, the framework shows whether a company’s organizational culture corresponds with one of the following options: clan, adhocracy, market or hierarchy. The results show that most of the companies’ organizational cultures were hierarchical, characterized by a greater need for stability and control and a formal work environment. Clans were the second most popular type of organizational culture, characterized as having greater internal flexibility, more informal environments and fewer hierarchical levels. Second, by combining the above results with the assessment of the GRI indicators in the companies’ sustainability reports, the study checked whether the companies had strong (balanced) or non-balanced cultures. The results show that there was a greater correlation between a strong (balanced) culture and the total value of the reported indicators, compared to a non-balanced culture.

Originality/value

The paper takes an innovative approach by correlating two different but well-recognized methodologies as a way to create a more holistic assessment that can help stakeholders to understand both the way these companies work and how this choice reflects the transparency of their reporting.

Keywords : Sustainability.

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