Agency theory is extensively employed in the accounting literature to explain and predict the appointment and performance of external auditors. Argues that agency theory also provides a useful theoretical framework for the study of the internal auditing function. Proposes that agency theory not only helps to explain and predict the existence of internal audit but that it also helps to explain the role and responsibilities assigned to internal auditors by the organization, and that agency theory predicts how the internal audit function is likely to be affected by organizational change. Concludes that agency theory provides a basis for rich research which can benefit both the academic community and the internal auditing profession.
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