Skip Navigation Links
Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management
António Mendes Lopes (editor), Jiazhong Zhang(editor)
António Mendes Lopes (editor)

University of Porto, Portugal


Jiazhong Zhang (editor)

School of Energy and Power Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi Province 710049, China

Fax: +86 29 82668723 Email:

The Relationships Between Contextual Variables and Perceived Importance and Benefits of Environmental Management Accounting (EMA) Techniques

Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management 6(1) (2018) 17--32 | DOI:10.5890/JEAM.2018.03.002

Hatem Mohamed EL-Shishini$^{1}$, Makarand Upadhyaya$^{2}$

$^{1}$ Accounting Department, College of Business Administration, University of Bahrain, Zallaq, P.O. BOX 32028, Bahrain

$^{2}$ Department of Management and Marketing, College of Business Administration, University of Bahrain, Zallaq, P.O. BOX 32028, Bahrain

Download Full Text PDF



Environmental management accounting (EMA) has emerged over last decades because of increasing awareness of the impacts of companies on their environment. There was a limited attention directed to the importance attached to EMA's techniques and the importance of benefits derived from EMA's techniques. Drawing off the contingency theory literature, the current study examined the relationship between the size, intensity of competition, type of industry, cost structure, and the importance attached to EMA's techniques and the importance of benefits derived from these techniques. Data was collected using a sample of 100 accountants in Bahrain. Replies were received from 36 accountants. The results indicated that there were significant relationships between size, type of industry, cost structure, and the importance attached to EMA's techniques. With regards to the benefits derived from EMA's techniques, the results indicated that the type of industry and cost structure was significantly influencing the importance of benefits of EMA's techniques. The study determined many potentials for future research including understanding factors influencing the allocation of environmental costs to products/services, and using other contextual variables to gain a better understanding of EMA in less developing countries.


  1. [1]  Abrahamson, E. (1991), Managerial fads and fashions: The diffusion and rejection of innovations, Academy of Management Review 16, 586-612.
  2. [2]  Adams, C. and Zutshi, A. (2004), Corporate social responsibility: Why business should act responsibly and be accountable, Australian Accounting Review 14, 31-39.
  3. [3]  Ahmed, K. and Courtis, J.K. (1999), Associations between corporate characteristics and disclosure levels in annual reports: a metaanalysis, The British Accounting Review 31, 35-61.
  4. [4]  Bennett, M., Rikhardsson, P. and Schaltegger, S. (2003), Adopting environmental management accounting: EMA as a value-adding activity, Environmental Management Accounting—Purpose and Progress. Springer.
  5. [5]  Bjørnenak, T. (1997), Diffusion and accounting: the case of ABC in Norway, Management Accounting Research 8, 3-17.
  6. [6]  Brierley, J.A., Cowton, C.J. and Drury, C. (2001), Research into product costing practice: A European perspective, European Accounting Review 10, 215-256.
  7. [7]  Bryman, A. and Cramer, D. (2002), Quantitative data analysis with SPSS release 8 for Windows: a guide for social scientists, Routledge.
  8. [8]  Bui, B. and De Villiers, C. (2017), Business strategies and management accounting in response to climate change risk exposure and regulatory uncertainty, The British Accounting Review 49, 4-24.
  9. [9]  Burritt, R.L. (2004), Environmental management accounting: roadblocks on the way to the green and pleasant land, Business Strategy and the Environment 13, 13-32.
  10. [10]  Burritt, R.L., Hahn, T. and Schaltegger, S. (2002), Towards a comprehensive framework for environmental management accounting—Links between business actors and environmental management accounting tools, Australian Accounting Review 12, 39-50.
  11. [11]  Burritt, R.L. and Saka, C. (2006), Environmental management accounting applications and eco-efficiency: case studies from Japan, Journal of Cleaner Production 14, 1262-1275.
  12. [12]  Burritt, R.L., Schaltegger, S., Bennett, M., Pohjola, T. and Csutora, M. (2011), Environmental management accounting and supply chain management, Springer Science & Business Media.
  13. [13]  Burritt, R.L., Schaltegger, S., Ferreira, A., Moulang, C. and Hendro, B. (2010), Environmental management accounting and innovation: an exploratory analysis, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal 23, 920-948.
  14. [14]  Chenhall, R.H. 2003, Management control systems design within its organizational context: findings from contingency-based research and directions for the future, Accounting, Organizations and Society 28, 127-168.
  15. [15]  Chenhall, R.H. and Morris, D. (1986), The impact of structure, environment, and interdependence on the perceived usefulness of management accounting systems, Accounting Review 16-35.
  16. [16]  Christ, K.L. and Burritt, R.L. (2013), Environmental management accounting: the significance of contingent variables for adoption, Journal of Cleaner Production 41, 163-173.
  17. [17]  Cooper, R. and Kaplan, R. (1987), Accounting and Management, Field Study Perspectives. Boston.
  18. [18]  Cortina, J.M. (1993), What is coefficient alpha? An examination of theory and applications, Journal of Applied Psychology 78, 98.
  19. [19]  De Beer, P. and Friend, F. (2006), Environmental accounting: A management tool for enhancing corporate environmental and economic performance, Ecological Economics 58, 548-560.
  20. [20]  De Vaus, D. (2013), Surveys in social research, Routledge.
  21. [21]  Deegan, C. and Gordon, B. (1996), A study of the environmental disclosure practices of Australian corporations, Accounting and Business Research 26, 187-199.
  22. [22]  United Nations Division for Sustainable Development (2001), Environmental management accounting procedures and principles, UN.
  23. [23]  Dillman, D.A. (2000), Mail and internet surveys: The tailored design method, Wiley New York.
  24. [24]  Drazin, R. and Van De Ven, A.H. (1985), Alternative forms of fit in contingency theory, Administrative Science Quarterly, 514-539.
  25. [25]  Dunk, A.S. (2007), Assessing the effects of product quality and environmental management accounting on the competitive advantage of firms, Australasian Accounting Business & Finance Journal 1, 28.
  26. [26]  Epstein, M.J. and Young, S.D. (1999), "Greening" with EVA, Strategic Finance 80, 45.
  27. [27]  Ezzamei, M. (1990), The impact of environmental uncertainty, managerial autonomy and size on budget characteristics, Management Accounting Research 1, 181-197.
  28. [28]  Foster, G. and Swenson, D.W. (1997), Measuring the success of activity-based cost management and its determinants, Journal of Management Accounting Research 9, 109.
  29. [29]  Frost, G.R. and Wilmshurst, T.D. (1998), Evidence of environmental accounting in Australian companies, Asian Review of Accounting 6, 163-180.
  30. [30]  Gale, R. (2006), Environmental costs at a Canadian paper mill: A case study of Environmental Management Accounting (EMA), Journal of Cleaner Production 14, 1237-1251.
  31. [31]  Gordon, L.A. and Miller, D. (1976), A contingency framework for the design of accounting information systems, Accounting, Organizations and Society 1, 59-69.
  32. [32]  Gordon, L.A. and Narayanan, V.K. (1984), Management accounting systems, perceived environmental uncertainty and organization structure: an empirical investigation, Accounting, Organizations and Society 9, 33-47.
  33. [33]  Hendro, B., Ferreira, A. and Moulang, C. (2008), Does the use of environmental management accounting affect innovation? An exploratory analysis. 31st Annual Congress of the European Accounting Association, 2008. Hoyle, R.H., Harris, M.J. and Judd, C.M. (2002), Research methods in social relations, Thomson Learning.
  34. [34]  Jasch, C. (2003), The use of Environmental Management Accounting (EMA) for identifying environmental costs, Journal of Cleaner Production 11, 667-676.
  35. [35]  Jasch, C. (2006), How to perform an environmental management cost assessment in one day, Journal of Cleaner Production 14, 1194-1213.
  36. [36]  Jasch, C. (2011), Environmental Management Accounting: Comparing and Linking Requirements at Micro and Macro Levels–A Practitioner’s View. Environmental Management Accounting and Supply Chain Management. Springer.
  37. [37]  Khandwalla, P.N. (1972), The effect of different types of competition on the use of management controls, Journal of Accounting Research 275-285.
  38. [38]  Lee, K.-H. (2012), Carbon accounting for supply chain management in the automobile industry, Journal of Cleaner Production 36, 83-93.
  39. [39]  Libby, T. and Waterhouse, J.H. (1996), Predicting change in management accounting systems, Journal of Management Accounting Research 8, 137.
  40. [40]  Luft, J. and Shields, M.D. (2003), Mapping management accounting: graphics and guidelines for theory-consistent empirical research, Accounting, Organizations and Society 28, 169-249.
  41. [41]  Medley, P. (1997), Environmental Accounting-What does it mean to professional accountants? Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal 10, 594-600.
  42. [42]  Merchant, K.A. (1981), The design of the corporate budgeting system: influences on managerial behavior and performance, Accounting Review 813-829. Moores, K. and
  43. [43]  Chenhall, R. (1994), Framework and MAS evidence, Strategic Management Accounting: Australian Cases 12-26.
  44. [44]  Mullins, L.J. (2007), Management and organisational behaviour, Pearson education.
  45. [45]  Nuhu, N.A., Baird, K. and Bala Appuhamilage, A. (2017), The adoption and success of contemporary management accounting practices in the public sector, Asian Review of Accounting 25, 234-238.
  46. [46]  Nually, J.C. and Bernstein, I.H. (1978), Psychometric theory. New York: McGraw-Hill.
  47. [47]  Oppenheim, A.N. (2000), Questionnaire design, interviewing and attitude measurement, Bloomsbury Publishing.
  48. [48]  Otley, D.T. (1980), The contingency theory of management accounting: achievement and prognosis, Accounting, Organizations and Society 5, 413-428.
  49. [49]  Papaspyropoulos, K.G., Blioumis, V., Christodoulou, A.S., Birtsas, P.K. and Skordas, K.E. (2012), Challenges in implementing environmental management accounting tools: the case of a nonprofit forestry organization, Journal of Cleaner Production 29, 132-143.
  50. [50]  Savage, D. and Jasch, C. (2004), International Guidelines on Environmental Management Accounting (EMA). International Federation of Accountants, New York.
  51. [51]  Schaltegger, S., Hahn, T. and Burritt, R. (2000), Environmental management accounting: Overview and main approaches, Center for Sustainability Management.
  52. [52]  Schaltegger, S., Viere, T. and Zvezdov, D. (2012), Tapping environmental accounting potentials of beer brewing: Information needs for successful cleaner production, Journal of Cleaner Production 29, 1-10.
  53. [53]  Shields, M.D. (1997), Research in management accounting by North Americans in the 1990s, Journal of Management Accounting Research 9, 3.
  54. [54]  Simons, R. (1990), The role of management control systems in creating competitive advantage: new perspectives, Accounting, Organizations and Society 15, 127-143.
  55. [55]  Staniskis, J.K. and Stasiskiene, Z. (2006), Environmental management accounting in Lithuania: exploratory study of current practices, opportunities and strategic intents, Journal of Cleaner Production 14, 1252-1261.
  56. [56]  Williamson, O.E. (1970), Corporate control and business behavior: An inquiry into the effects of organization form on enterprise behavior, Prentice Hall.
  57. [57]  Xiaomei, L. (2004), Theory and practice of environmental management accounting, International Journal of Technology Management & Sustainable Development 3, 47-57.