Current Risk Reporting Practices in Saudi Arabia
: An Institutional Perspective

  • Rawan M. Alsahlawi

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy

Abstract

The increasing complexity of the business environment, together with the increased globalisation of financial and product markets, have increased stakeholders’ needs for information and the demand for companies to enhance their financial reporting practices (Kothari, 2000; Dominguez and Gamez, 2014; Elshandidy et al., 2018). Indeed, reporting on financial instruments risk is an important element that companies should provide in their annual reports because of its impact on a company’s financial position (Taylor et al., 2010; Tahat, 2014; Tauringana and Chithambo, 2016; Thai and Birt, 2019). This study introduces new theoretical arguments to show the influence of the institutional processes on companies’ decisions to report risk information. This research combines Oliver’s (1991) framework and the institutional logics concept proposed by Thornton et al. (2012) to the field of corporate reporting practices. This combination enhances the explanatory power of Oliver’s (1991) framework by incorporating the broader belief system in examining companies’ willingness to conform to, or resist, institutional pressures (Guerreiro et al., 2012).

The disclosure index that was utilised to analyse the annual reports of a sample of 104 Saudi-listed companies provided evidence that illustrated the variation in risk reporting; that is, heterogeneity in risk reporting practices was prevalent amongst Saudi-listed companies. Moreover, a multivariate regression analysis identified four institutional determinants that influenced the extent of risk reporting practices: legitimacy, consistency, coercion and diffusion. This finding supports the presence of multiple logics in shaping risk reporting practices, such as corporation logics, professional logics and state logics. The findings from a series of fifteen semi-structured interviews on risk reporting practices largely supported the findings obtained from the statistical analysis. In particular, the findings indicated that the interviewees acknowledged the importance of different categories of risk reporting, although the relative importance attached to report different risk categories was a primary concern. The perceptions of the interviewees regarding the institutional influence of legitimacy, consistency, coercion and diffusion on risk reporting matched the multivariate regression analysis results. However, the findings from the interviews provided a deeper understanding about the institutional influences on risk reporting and identified institutional multiplicity and discretionary constraints as important factors influencing the extent of risk reporting practices, which supports the presence of family and professional logics.
Date of Award2022
Original languageEnglish
SponsorsKingdom of Saudi Arabia
SupervisorTheresa Dunne (Supervisor) & Suzanne Fifield (Supervisor)

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