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It is merely a matter of time: A meta‐analysis of the causality between environmental performance and financial performance

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  • Markus Hang
  • Jerome Geyer‐Klingeberg
  • Andreas W. Rathgeber

Abstract

Research on the relationship between corporate environmental performance (CEP) and financial performance (CFP) continuously receives high attention in both general media and academic publications. One central issue concerns the causal effects between the two constructs. Because existing primary literature is characterized by its heterogeneous study designs and mixed empirical evidence, the aim of this paper is to explicitly shed light on the causality effects between CEP and CFP by means of a meta‐analysis of 893 empirical estimates from 142 CEP–CFP studies. Our findings suggest that in the short run (1 year), financial resources can increase a firm's environmental performance as proposed by the slack resources hypothesis; however, the effects disappear in the long run (after more than 1 year). Conversely, increasing environmental performance has no short‐term effect on a corporate financial performance, whereas a firm significantly benefits in the long term, which is in accordance with the Porter hypothesis. Overall, our results show that the causality between environmental performance and financial performance depends on the time horizon.

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  • Markus Hang & Jerome Geyer‐Klingeberg & Andreas W. Rathgeber, 2019. "It is merely a matter of time: A meta‐analysis of the causality between environmental performance and financial performance," Business Strategy and the Environment, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(2), pages 257-273, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:bstrat:v:28:y:2019:i:2:p:257-273
    DOI: 10.1002/bse.2215
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