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Global Environmental Policies: Why Differences Between Countries Matter

Tiemei Li has received a School of Management Research Grant to study the impact of differences in environmental sustainability policies around the globe.

Research has encouraged countries to adopt environmentally sustainable policies. However, there are still significant differences in environmental sustainability standards across international borders.

Professor Li will explore whether varying environmental sustainability standards have an impact on the overall global environmental performance, as well as on the environmental performance of multinational corporations.

Li’s project will consist of data extraction and analysis from five environmental sustainability databases. Using the data, she will examine how, and if, varying environmental sustainability regulations allow multinational corporations to complete environmentally unsustainable operations by using international environmental sustainability policy arbitrage.

Research impact

This research will use a broad, global approach, adding to the environmental sustainability policy literature. It could benefit policy makers and international corporations by showing the complexity of international differences in environmental sustainability policies, the value in global collaborations and the role of multinational corporations in global environmental performance. Insights gained could influence future policies on reducing global carbon emissions.


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Tiemei (Sarah) Li is an associate professor of accounting at the Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa. Before earning her Ph.D in accounting from Concordia University, Canada, she worked in the Chinese financial industry. Professor Li teaches both financial and managerial accounting courses at the undergraduate level, along with an accounting seminar in the Ph.D. program. Her current research interests focus primarily on financial reporting quality, corporate finance, and the effects of accounting information on capital markets. Learn more about Tiemei Li’s research.