There has been widespread recent public debate about problems of corporate governance, accountability and audit regulation in the UK. In the arena of UK audit regulation, the Auditing Practices Board’s publications, The Audit Agenda and The Audit Research Agenda, contain a discussion of audit regulation and call for research into the problem. This article reviews the “macro”, “micro” and “international” models for the regulation of audit that have already been proposed in the literature, and considers the appropriateness of the models to improve the regulation of company audit in the UK. The main conclusion is that while each of the models proposed have superficial attractions, there is a danger of considering them out of context. More research is needed into the practicalities, costs and benefits of the various models that have been suggested. Without such research there is a risk that any reform may not improve, or indeed may reduce, the effectiveness of the existing regulatory framework.
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