Integrated Reporting and Integrating Thinking: Practical Challenges

  • Matteo La TorreEmail author
  • Cristiana Bernardi
  • James Guthrie
  • John Dumay


Integrated reporting (<IR>) is currently a hot topic for academic research because of the practical challenges businesses encounter when implementing it. Motivated by the results from the IIRC’s call for feedback on the International <IR> Framework (<IRF>) implementation, this chapter focuses on the challenges of integrated thinking and examines the extant academic literature to offer contributions for future research based on <IR> practice. We find that integrated thinking suffers from significant conceptual, theoretical and practical challenges, which obstruct the claimed benefits deriving from the adoption of <IR>. Therefore, this chapter contributes to rethinking the paradigm of integrated thinking as an internal managerial practice, and calls for pragmatic research investigating <IR> internal practices and integrated thinking. Within third-stage <IR> research, that provides a critical and performative assessment of <IR> in action, we advocate that researchers need to shift the focus from reporting to internal practices. Accordingly, we claim that managers need to abandon the compliance-driven logic underpinning external reporting to foster integrated thinking and unlock its potential in practice.


Integrated reporting Integrated thinking International <IR> Framework International Integrated Reporting Council 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matteo La Torre
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cristiana Bernardi
    • 2
  • James Guthrie
    • 3
  • John Dumay
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Economic Studies, University “G. D’Annunzio” of Chieti-PescaraPescaraItaly
  2. 2.Lecturer in Accounting, Department for Accounting and Finance, Faculty of Business and Law, The Open University Business SchoolMilton KeynesUK
  3. 3.Department of Accounting and Corporate Governance, Faculty of Business and EconomicsMacquarie UniversitySydneyAustralia

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