Corporate governance and voluntary disclosures in annual reports: a post-International Financial Reporting Standard adoption evidence from an emerging capital market

Published date23 March 2022
Date23 March 2022
Subject MatterAccounting & finance,Accounting/accountancy,Accounting methods/systems
AuthorRichard Nana Boateng,Vincent Tawiah,George Tackie
Corporate governance and
voluntary disclosures in annual
reports: a post-International
Financial Reporting Standard
adoption evidence from an
emerging capital market
Richard Nana Boateng
DCU Business School, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland and
Department of Accounting Studies, Akenten Appiah-Menka University of Skills
Training and Entrepreneurial Development, Kumasi, Ghana
Vincent Tawiah
DCU Business School, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland, and
George Tackie
UCC Business School, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to provide an empirical evidence concerning the inuence of
Corporate governance and voluntarydisclosures in annual reports: a post-International Financial Reporting
Standardsadoption evidence from an emerging capital market.
Design/methodology/approach Data were collected from the annual reports of all 22 listed non-
nancial rms over a ve-year period. Using contentanalysis, the audited annual reports of the rms were
scored on the extent of overalland four specic types of voluntary disclosures made. The panel data obtained
were analyzedusing a generalized ordinary least squares regressionmodel.
Findings The ndings of the study showthat voluntary disclosures among the rms are low even after
the adoption of IFRS. Corporate governance attributes of board size and board leadership structure are
signicant determinants of the extent of voluntary disclosures made by the rms. However, board
independence and auditor typeexhibit only a signicant positive effect on voluntary nancial and forward-
lookinginformation disclosures.
© Richard Nana Boateng, Vincent Tawiah and George Tackie. Published by Emerald Publishing
Limited. This is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may
reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and
non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full
terms of this licence may be seen at
The authors acknowledge the inputs of several academics across the globe, who provided very
useful criticisms during conferences and have been instrumental in bringing this paper to its current
state. A special acknowledgment to Dr Otuo Serebour Agyemang (deceased) for his inspiration and
motivation in starting and completing an earlier draft of this paper.
Conict of interest statement: On behalf of all authors, I, Richard Nana Boateng (corresponding
author), state that there is no conict of interest.
Received29 October 2021
Revised25 January 2022
Accepted9 February 2022
InternationalJournal of
Accounting& Information
Vol.30 No. 2, 2022
pp. 252-276
EmeraldPublishing Limited
DOI 10.1108/IJAIM-10-2021-0220
The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available on Emerald Insight at:
Research limitations/implications Firmsvoluntary information disclosure and governance
variables were restrictedto those in annual reports, which may partially reectthe reality of rmsdisclosure
and governancepractices.
Practical implications The present study offers useful insightsto regulators of the capital market to
strengthen monitoringof rms to ensure strict adherence to corporate governance bestpractice guidelines as
a means of improving informationenvironment.
Originality/value This study is one of the very few ones in Africa, especiallyin the context of Ghana
Stock Exchange,to use post-IFRS data and examine a disaggregatedvoluntary disclosure by rms.
Keywords Corporate governance, IFRS, Annual reports, Ghana Stock Exchange, Voluntary disclosures
Paper type Research paper
1. Introduction
Corporate governance systems, including issues of information disclosures and
transparency, have witnessed signicant improvements in developed economies following
the devastating collapse of many corporategiants, such as Enron in the USA and Parmalat
in the European Union (EU). However, developingeconomies, including Ghana, continue to
lag behind, despite efforts at improving overallcorporate governance (Papadopoulos, 2019).
Ghanas adoption of international nancial reporting standards (IFRS) and corporate
governance best practice guidelines, in 2007 and 2010, respectively, were expected to
improve overall rm-level corporategovernance, nancial reporting, information disclosure
and transparency (Appiah et al.,2016;Tawiah and Boolaky, 2019). Scholars have suggested
that mandatory adoption of IFRS and its effective compliance among rms is a function of
rm-level corporate governance practices and other rm characteristics (Horton et al.,2012;
Tawiah and Boolaky, et al., 2019;Appiah etal.,2016;Barako, 2007). Despite the adoption of
IFRS and implementation of corporate governanceguidelines, the capital market witnessed
major corporate scandals and failurese.g. UT Bank and Capital Bank (Ansah, 2017). This
calls into question whether the mandatory adoptionof IFRS and corporate governance best
practices guidelines have had any signicant impact on the information disclosure and
transparency environment of Ghana. Thus,in this study, we examine the inuence of rm-
level corporate governancepractices on the extent of voluntarydisclosures by listed rms.
While interest in disclosureresearch has surged over the past three decades, the plethora
of studies has rather concentrated on advanced economies in Europe and the USA
anescu et al., 2012;Boesso et al., 2007;Barros et al.,2013) with scant evidence on
developing economies, particularly Africa (Adelopo et al., 2011;Barako, 2007;Rouf, 2011;
Appiah et al., 2016). Scholars have highlighted that enhanced disclosures by rms in
developing economies can strengthen their corporate brands, attract foreign investment,
lower cost of capital, reduce political and regulation intervention and enable rms to
function within a productive and responsible framework (Hongxia and Ainian et al.,2008;
Chan et al., 2014;Hermalinand Weisbach, 2012;Entwistle, 1997).
There are several channels for communicating important corporate information, including
internet websites and press releases (Healy and Palepu, 2001). However, the audited annual report
remains the most important and credible medium for communicating corporate transparency and
voluntary disclosures, including nancial and non-nancial information (Nandi and Ghosh, et al.,
2012;Neu et al., 1998). Unlike other channels, the annual report is subject to strict regulation and
scrutiny by external auditors, hence is relied on by rmsrelevant publics (Neu et al.,1998). As
such, rms invest signicant amount of time, energy and money in generating and circulating
their annual reports every year, as they acknowledge the ability of its content to inuence the
perception of its relevant publics and promote corporate legitimacy (Neu et al.,1998).

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