Sustainability assurance in auditor education

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For long, the assurance of sustainability reports has predominantly been a voluntary practice. The adoption of the CSRD has changed this. Due to the CSRD, sustainability assurance will become mandatory for a lot of organizations. Since sustainability assurance is a relatively new field, auditors still need to learn how to provide assurance to sustainability reports. The education of auditors can play a significant role in teaching them that. This thesis provides insight into how sustainability assurance can be included in auditor education. The study also looks at the current and the desired state of sustainability assurance in auditor education, and the difference between those states. Based on an interpretivist paradigm, this qualitative study includes ten interviews and a document analysis. The results of this study indicate that auditor education currently includes very little sustainability assurance, while the desired state includes much more. There are both obstacles and accelerators between the current and the desired state. While much of the obstacles can be canceled out by accelerators, the solution of making sustainability assurance a separate specialization in auditor education resolves most obstacles. Thus, sustainability assurance can best be included in auditor education by making it a separate specialization.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen