Appendix C: coding of environmental reports
The text of firms’ environmental reports was analysed using QSR NVivo 2.0 qualitative analysis software. This software allows codes to be applied to the text for recurring concepts expressed. Coding was applied to those sections of environmental reports where rationales for action are outlined, rather than the action itself. Thus, codes were applied to executive statements at the front of reports, sections on the company’s ‘vision’ vis-à-vis the environment, and the firm’s actual environmental policy guidelines. The rules employed for coding are based on authoritative literature outlining appropriate methodologies (for example, see Bazeley and Richards, 2000; Gibbs, 2002; Bryman, 2004; Denscombe, 1998; Yin, 2003a and b). The definitions of the factors to which codes were applied, and their subcategories, are defined below. Material factors are split between the subcategories of market forces and state regulation. These are largely the material factors already examined in Chapters 4 and 5. For the sake of coding, market forces are defined in material terms as statements that identify forces that affect the firm’s financial bottom line and its economic performance as a result of the products it sells. Therefore, codes applied within this subcategory related to the following concepts: 1. Competition, in terms of: a. Consumer demand: The need to take account of consumer preferences or demand – for example, tying efforts on the environment to demand for these, or saying that market forces temper what can be done. b. Competitive pressure from other firms: Competitive pressures from other firms in markets or within...
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