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Paper Information

Journal:   THE IRANIAN ACCOUNTING AND AUDITING REVIEW   spring 2019 , Volume 26 , Number 1 ; Page(s) 19 To 38.

An Investigation of the Audit Committee Characteristics Effects on Corporate Social Responsibility Disclosure

* Department of Accounting, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran
Objective: The wave of scandals and collapses of large financial institutions and firms in the world leads to create new corporate governance rules, and one of the most important ones is the necessity of an audit committee in the corporate governance structure. On the other hand, the impact of companies on society has also become a global concern and companies face increased pressure from stakeholders to have a broader view of their goals and activities in terms of social and environmental dimensions. In the same vein, this issue has been considered as corporate social responsibility in most studies in Iran and other countries. However, there are concerns about the quantity and quality of disclosure of corporate social responsibility. Accordingly, it is necessary that committees such as the audit committee be effective in reducing these concerns as a monitoring mechanism of corporate governance mechanisms, and can serve as a tool of monitoring and improving disclosure of corporate social responsibility. Accordingly, the main purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of the Audit Committee Characteristics on disclosure of corporate social responsibility. Methods: For this purpose, 133 listed companies at the Tehran Stock Exchange during 2013 to 2017 were selected as the sample and multiple regression equations of integrated data method. In addition, a checklist of 17 components and 60 criteria, including three social, economic, and environmental dimensions of social responsibility has been used to measure the disclosure level of social responsibility. Results: Findings of the research show that the characteristics of the audit committee including independence, size, financial expertise, and gender diversity of the members of the audit committee have a positive and significant impact on the disclosure of corporate social responsibility. Conclusion: Effective audit committee, according to the obtained results, as an effective mechanism, causes improving the credibility of financial and non-financial reporting such as social responsibility disclosure. That is, effective audit committee can improve the level of voluntary disclosure of information like social responsibility disclosure through monitoring the reporting process.
Keyword(s): Corporate social responsibility,Audit committee independence,Audit committee size,Audit committee financial expertise,Audit Committee gender diversity
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