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Management accounting change in South Africa: Case studies from retail services

Nelson Maina Waweru (United States International University‐Africa, Nairobi, Kenya)
Zahirul Hoque (School of Law and Business, Charles Darwin University, Darwin, Australia)
Enrico Uliana (Department of Accounting, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch, South Africa)

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

ISSN: 0951-3574

Article publication date: 1 December 2004



Most research on management accounting change relates to practices in developed countries. This paper reports on a field study of management accounting change in the South African context. It uses a contingency theory framework within four retail companies to understand the processes of their management accounting systems change and to explore the rationales for such change processes. The findings indicate considerable changes in management accounting systems within the four cases. Such changes include increased use of contemporary management accounting practices notably activity‐based cost allocation systems and the balanced scorecard approach to performance measures. The paper suggests that recent environmental changes in the South African economy arising from government reform/deregulation policy and global competition largely facilitated the management accounting change processes within the participating organisations.



Maina Waweru, N., Hoque, Z. and Uliana, E. (2004), "Management accounting change in South Africa: Case studies from retail services", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 17 No. 5, pp. 675-704.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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