Accounting for sustainable development - a case study of city farm

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Lamberton, G 2000, 'Accounting for sustainable development - a case study of city farm', Critical Perspectives on Accounting, vol. 11, no. 5, pp. 583-605.

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An accounting model designed to evaluate performance in achieving the objectives of sustainable development is applied to an organisation striving for a mix of ecological, social, and economic goals. The accounting model uses environmental performance indicators and life cycle analysis to measure performance against ecologically efficient and sustainability targets, utilising both quantitative and qualitative data. It is found that the organisation’s industrial design is consistent with some of the ecological goals of sustainable development, but ecological and financial constraints, together with priorities of the economic system within which the organisation functions, lead to specific aspects of the organisation’s operations being ecologically unsustainable. The paper concludes that the accounting model enables an organisation’s contribution to the multidimensional objectives of sustainable development to be evaluated, and the implications of this for accounting and the sustainable development agenda are discussed.

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