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Title: Sustainable development: What is the role of audit?

Authors: Hairul Nizam Yusoff, Ahmad Fariz Mohamed and Abdul Samad Hadi

Journal: Journal of Sustainability Science and Management

Number: Vol. 11, Number 1 (2016)


This study aims to explore the potential use of environmental audit as a tool to assist in the achievement of sustainable development especially in the context of public sector where the environmental accountability, has been emphasized by the World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) as one of the prerequisite to achieve the goal. This study employs qualitative method to explore the issue further in the context of Malaysia, a developing country. The respondents for this study were the public auditors, public officers and the Members of the Legislative. The findings clarify that environmental audit in the public sector could contribute positively to the achievement of sustainable development goals. However, in the context of developing countries where economic development is given priority over the needs to preserve the environment, the finding shows that the role of environmental audit is actually limited. It is merely used as a preventive measure to ensure planning and development is not significantly affected the environment and the society.