Do Chinese State Subsidies Affect Voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility Disclosure?

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This paper examines whether state subsidy is a determinant of the voluntary corporate social responsibility (CSR) disclosures of Chinese listed firms. Using archival data from a sample of manufacturing firms listed on the Shanghai and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges from 2008-2012, we find that state subsidies have a material influence on CSR disclosure choice beyond the variables that commonly figure in Western models. This effect is concentrated among the non-state-owned enterprises (NSOEs) rather than the state-owned enterprises (SOEs), and especially when subsidies are granted through non-tax based rather than tax-based channels. Further analysis also suggests that these findings are more pronounced among firms domiciled in regions with a higher level of corruption. Our findings shed light on how political cost considerations influence firms’ decisions to disclose CSR information in China where government intervention in the economic and business environment is pervasive.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-200
JournalJournal of Accounting and Public Policy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017


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