In order to further develop the theoretical basis of environmental management accounting (EMA), a contingency perspective is used in this paper to explain the initial implementation and design of EMA in firms, based on internalities as well as externalities. Nine variables have been identified to impact EMA either via push or pull mechanisms. A integrative model of these pull and push factors is the outcome of two large-scale triangulated case studies that were conducted within the global companies Borealis Group and Puma SE based on exemplary cases. Interviews with sustainability representatives and a discourse analysis of related press and media releases are included for triangulation. All the collected data were coded into nine a-priori variables, previously identified in a meta-analysis of existing literature. The following factors have a push influence on EMA: location, interdependence, availability of resources, ownership and control as well as uncertainty. In contrast, only three variables pull EMA into an organisation: the size, history and the organisation's strategy.
- contingency theory
- environmental management accounting
- push–pull model