Analysis of criteria weights for the assessment of corporate sustainability: a case study in sugar manufacturing

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Panitas Sureeyatanapas
Jian-Bo Yang
David Bamford


 The assessment of sustainability performance has become a topic widely discussed by business practitioners. The complexity of this issue is highlighted by the incorporation of a large number of criteria. Several methods under the context of multiple criteria decision analysis (MCDA) have been employed to facilitate the aggregation of various criteria and to provide guidelines for decision making. As most MCDA methods assume that each criterion plays a role equal to its weight, this paper investigates the weight of each criterion in evaluation of corporate sustainability by focusing on the sugar industry in order to respond to the lack of MCDA and sustainability studies in this sector. The weighting is analysed by means of the relative importance based upon interviews and the direct rating technique. Statistical analysis is also conducted. The results from this empirical research indicate priorities of sustainability criteria and demonstrate the diversity of concerns within the industry when deciding on sustainability policies and strategies. This encourages practitioners to incorporate weights for uncertainty of sustainability criteria into decision making. Possible reasons for variations or changes in weights have been also discussed, and this enables practitioners to perform a sensitivity analysis in a more realistic way.


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Sureeyatanapas, P., Yang, J.-B., & Bamford, D. (2016). Analysis of criteria weights for the assessment of corporate sustainability: a case study in sugar manufacturing. Engineering and Applied Science Research, 43(3), 135-145. Retrieved from


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