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2020/2021  KAN-CCBLV1032U  Environmental Social and Governance (ESG): data, accounting and reporting

English Title
Environmental Social and Governance (ESG): data, accounting and reporting

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Min. participants 50
Max. participants 100
Study board
Study Board for BSc and MSc in Business, Language and Culture, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Course Coordinator
    Caroline Aggestam Pontoppidan - Department of Accounting (AA)
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
  • Management
  • Accounting
Teaching methods
  • Online teaching
Last updated on 26-08-2020

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of voluntary and mandatory standards and regulations that govern carbon accounting, ESG reporting and disclosures (including the EU Directive 2014/95/EU on non-financial reporting, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures);
  • Explain emerging theoretical constructs relating to ESG accounting and reporting within the literature;
  • Display knowledge of the most relevant ESG rating schemes and the role of for corporate reporting;
  • Apply the tools (indicators, materiality matrix, carbon accounting etc.) covered in the course, to real life cases to prepare ESG reports and disclosures;
  • Critically analyse environmental, social and economic responsibility of an organization and understand data, measurement, reporting challenges;
  • Explain differences between sustainability assurance and traditional financial auditing;
Environmental Social and Governance (ESG): data, accounting and reporting:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Project
Duration 48 hours to prepare
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

This course provides students with an understanding of ESG governance at a global, regional (EU) and local (Denmark) level. The course is focused on providing ESG data and data quality; accounting for ESG and, disclosure and finance in the context of sustainability and social justice. At the end of the course, reporting on ESG and ESG disclosures in Annual reports. The course will address the interlinkages between financial reporting and ESG reporting.


Students will gain a sound theoretical understanding in the area if ESG accounting and reporting together with technical understanding that will equip students to understand, among other things; carbon accounting, materiality matrixes and voluntary versus mandatory ESG disclosures.



Description of the teaching methods
The teaching sessions comprise lectures and class discussions as well as practical exercises. Various mini case problems are considered, whereby students are expected to analyse and interpret the ESG accounts or reports of a company under certain conditions. In addition to the sessions there are workshops to work through more extensive ESG reporting and carbon accounting problems and to when required review the most important points of the lectures through supplementary exercises, and thus prepare students even better for the final examination.
Feedback during the teaching period
The course is supplemented by a partial blended learning approach with the use of video materials and online multiple-choice questions.

In addition lectures and workshops will provide extensive opportunities for questions and answers. Students are also encouraged to take full advantage of staff office hours to engage in advancing comprehension of the course objectives.
Student workload
Classes 27 hours
Workshop/Exercises 9 hours
Preparation for class 170 hours
Mid Term Assignment 2 hours
Final Examination 48 hours
Expected literature

Bebbington, J. et al. (2019). Accounting and accountability in the Anthropocene, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Nov., 2019.


Brohé, A. (2016). The Handbook of Carbon Accounting. Routledge (*selected chapters)


Buhmann, K. (2017). Neglecting the Proactive Aspect of Human Rights Due Diligence? A Critical Appraisal of the EU’s Non-Financial Reporting Directive as a Pillar One Avenue for Promoting Pillar Two Action.


Epstein, M.J. and Bucharov, R.A. (2014). Making Sustainability Work: Best Practices in Managing and Measuring Corporate Social, Environmental, and Economic Impacts. Second Edition. Green leaf Publishing Limited, 2014.


United Nations (2015). Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development ( https:/​/​sustainabledevelopment.un.org/​content/​documents/​21252030%20Agenda%20for%20Sustainable%20Development%20web.pdf)


United Nations (2015). Global indicator framework for the Sustainable Development Goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. ( https:/​/​unstats.un.org/​sdgs/​indicators/​Global%20Indicator%20Framework%20after%202019%20refinement_Eng.pdf)


TCFD (2017). Recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (https:/​/​www.fsb-tcfd.org/​publications/​)


The Greenhouse gas protocol, A corporate Accounting and reporting standard, World Business Council and World Resource Institute

Last updated on 26-08-2020