Determinants of sustainability assurance levels: The case of French firms

Emna Klibi ORCID logo, Salma Damak-Ayadi ORCID logo, Sinda Dridi ORCID logo, Bouchra M’Zali



The aim of this work is to analyse the determinants of the level of sustainability assurance for the CAC 40 French firms from the time period preceding and following the implementation of the Grenelle 2 law that made sustainability assurance compulsory. The objective of the paper is twofold: 1) provide a better understanding of the factors influencing the professional judgement provided by assurance providers, 2) verify whether the content of the disclosed sustainability reports has evolved as a result of the introduction of the Grenelle 2 law or not. A sample of 257 firm-year observations is collected for the period 2008-2017 and an ordinal regression model is used in this study. The findings highlight a change in the content of assurance reports after the promulgation of the Grenelle 2 law. The sector’s sensitivity, the type of assurance provider, and the leverage level have an impact on the level of assurance for the period 2013-2017 which was not the case for the period 2008-2012. Based on the institutional theory, these correlations may be explained by the promulgation of the Grenelle 2 law in 2012.

Keywords: Sustainability Assurance, Assurance Level, Grenelle 2 Law, CAC 40

Authors’ individual contribution: Conceptualization – S.D.A.; Methodology – S.D.A. and S.D.; Investigation – S.D. and E.K.; Resources – E.K.; Writing – E.K.; Supervision – S.D.A., E.K., and B.M.

Declaration of conflicting interests: The Authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.

JEL Classification: M48, M14, Q01, Q56

Received: 09.05.2020
Accepted: 22.08.2020
Published online: 04.09.2020

How to cite this paper: Klibi, M., Damak-Ayadi, S., Dridi, S., & M’Zali, B. (2020). Determinants of sustainability assurance levels: The case of French firms. Corporate Governance and Sustainability Review, 4(2), 56-67.

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