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Abstract

In this article, we demonstrate the relevance of eye-tracking experiments in social and environmental accounting (SEA) research. Up to now, this type of design has been used in some areas within accounting research, but SEA has been neglected. If one is to adopt a user perspective [Merkl-Davies, D. M., and N. M. Brennan. 2007. “Discretionary Disclosure Strategies in Corporate Narratives: Incremental Information or Impression Management?” Journal of Accounting Literature 27: 116–196; 2011. “A Conceptual Framework of Impression Management: New Insights from Psychology, Sociology and Critical Perspectives.” Accounting and Business Research 41 (5): 415–437], the investigation and the understanding of the way social and environmental information affects user perceptions and decisions requires, among other tools, the use of eye-tracking setups. We discuss the need for eye-tracking experiments in SEA research and provide some preliminary evidence on their usefulness by conducting an illustrative experiment.

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