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Professor Carol Adams

Professor, Accounting
PhD, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom; MSc, London School of Economics, United Kingdom


Professor Carol Adams MSc PhD CA FAICD is an internationally recognised researcher in corporate accounting and reporting and its role in the relationships between business, society and the environment.  Her research has been published in Accounting Organizations and Society, Accounting Auditing and Accountability Journal, British Accounting Review, European Accounting Review, Accounting and Business Research, Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Abacus, Sustainability Accounting Management and Policy Journal, Financial Accountability and Management, Accounting Forum, Business Strategy and Environment

Carol’s work has accrued over 17,000 citations and her Google Scholar H Index is 47. Her 2002 and 2004 sole authored articles are the 8th and 11th most cited articles in the Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal where she has four of the top 40 cited papers published in the journal’s 30 year history.  She also has the 2nd most cited article in the British Accounting Review; the 4th most cited article in Critical Perspectives in Accounting; the 5th most cited article in Accounting Forum; and, the 5th and 7th most cited articles in the Sustainability Accounting Management and Policy Journal

Carol has received research funding from the Australian Research Council, ESRC, UNCTAD-ISAR and several international accounting bodies.  In 2000 and 2001 she served as Technical Expert to the SDG Impact Team at the United Nations Development Programme.

Carol is founding editor and Editor-in-Chief of the Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal which she established to promote research that addresses practice and policy issues capable of improving the relationships between accounting, organisations and sustainable development.  

Carol has sought to advance practice and policy with respect to integrating sustainability considerations into organisations through applied research, leadership, standard setting, advisory work and educating the next generation of business leaders for over two decades.  She has authored several industry/professional reports, has made submissions to numerous public consultations and writes on her website at  Carol is technical expert to the UNDP's SDG Impact Team contributing to the development of SDG Impact Standards.  She consults to multinational corporations and other organisations on corporate reporting and integrating sustainability into business practices. Recent assignments have included work with Royal Bank of Scotland, Cbus Superannuation Fund and Baillie Gifford. Carol has led the development of award winning sustainability reports, management and governance processes. Carol is currently a member of the Australian Accounting Standards Board's Advisory Panel on Sustainability Reporting. She is immediate past Chair of the Stakeholder Council of the Global Reporting Initiative, and  currently Chair of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland’s (ICAS) Sustainability Panel and member of their Policy Leadership Board. She has served as a member of the International Integrated Reporting Council’s Capitals Technical Collaboration Group, the Climate Disclosure Standards Board’s Technical Working Group (2014-2021) and the ACCA Global Forum on Sustainability (2011-2021).

Carol has a financial audit background with KPMG and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with ICAS. She holds an MSc in Accounting and Finance from the London School of Economics and a PhD in International Corporate Reporting from the University of Glasgow. She has held senior management positions in Universities including as Head of School, Faculty Acting Dean and Pro Vice-Chancellor and has previously held Professor of Accounting positions at Monash University and the University of Glasgow.  She has served on a number of Boards in the finance, education and not-for-profit sectors. She has also served as a member of the Sustainability Advisory Board for Fuji Xerox Australia and Sustainability Leadership Advisor to the Commonwealth Education Trust. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD).  She is a part time Professor at Durham University Business School and Honorary Research Fellow at Leuphana Universität Lüneburg.

Research interests

Corporate Reporting; Sustainable Development Goals; Corporate Governance; Climate Change Reporting; Sustainability Reporting; Responsible Investment

Fields of Research

  • Sustainability Accounting And Reporting - 350107
  • Financial Accounting - 350103
  • Business Systems In Context - 350300


Also published as: Adams, Carol; Adams, C.; Adams, C. A.; Adams, Carol A; Adams, Carol A.
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