The editor and the board member: in a beautiful Pea Green boat

Lee D. Parker (Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK)
Christos Begkos (Alliance Manchester Business School, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK)

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

ISSN: 0951-3574

Article publication date: 27 March 2023

Issue publication date: 27 March 2023



Parker, L.D. and Begkos, C. (2023), "The editor and the board member: in a beautiful Pea Green boat", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 768-769.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

Dear Loyal Editorial Board Member,

Greetings. Hope you are having a good week. This email will reveal that on this journal, we try to have fun amid all the seriousness. I am sitting in my city office with our journal administrator who is busy loading up refereeing areas and other data supplied by AAAJ editorial board members into our internal journal management system.

I want to share with you a very amusing moment we two have just experienced. As part of our own reviewer management systems, we have a recording system that tracks the performance of every ad hoc reviewer we have ever used as well as editorial board members. That record shows us every reviewing task an individual has been asked to undertake, whether they agreed to our request, how many days they delivered each report earlier or later than standard target report-back date, what their decision was […] what they ate for breakfast etc.

Your record to date has one characteristic that we have never seen before in any ad hoc reviewer or edit board member!!!! In your ad hoc reviewer record column for number of days earlier or later than target delivery date, all your reports show “0” variance!!! Our journal administrator was so amazed, she checked every individual just to make sure our system was not in error, but yes, you have always delivered your reports ON the due date!!!

We are fascinated. Now, of course, it is a fine record, and we thank you profusely!! But we think there is a research project in this!

Research questions:


How do you achieve this exactitude?


What are the deeper symbolic meanings of this phenomenon?


Does it connote a conscious or unconscious behavioural pattern?


Is there an underlying confirmation of the accounting precision stereotype?

As you probably know, we annually award a best paper award and a best reviewer award, but I am sorely tempted to establish an ad hoc award just for you in order to commemorate this remarkable feat! […].Hmmmmm […] maybe “The Reporting Precision Award”.

Anyway, we thought you might enjoy this. Thanks for brightening our day, and, of course, thanks for your great service to the journal.


The Editor

Dear Editor

Although I would have loved to have seen a record of earlier submissions of my reviewer reports, I consider my “0” variance a compliment due to some traumatic experiences I think we have all had with delayed referee reports of our submitted papers.

Taking up on your challenge regarding a research project on this exactitude, here are some early reflections:

  • Title: The performativity of Outlook: an auto-ethnographic case on academic reviewing exactitude.

  • RQ: How task exactitude manifests in pluralistic settings characterized by knowledge-led, diverse activities.

  • Findings: I set an Outlook calendar reminder for all my academic responsibilities (including refereeing duties). The reminder though has transformed into a weekly “To-do list” that disciplines oneself: I start working on various tasks at hand and slowly but firmly complete them as I move closer to the due date. Could these tasks be completed sooner? Yes. Would that satisfy my undiagnosed OCD? No.

  • What are the deeper symbolic meanings of this phenomenon? Reciprocity – treat people as one would like to be treated, i.e. everyone should have timely reviews back, if possible, especially when there are probationary requirements and careers at stake. Destigmatization – academia tends to get a bad reputation when it comes to timeliness of tasks, and this should change.

  • Does it connote a conscious or unconscious behavioural pattern? It is a purposive pattern of behaviour – somewhere between purposeful and passive. It is non-deliberate, instinctive, a predisposition.

  • Is there an underlying confirmation of the accounting precision stereotype? Yes – although not professionally trained as an accountant, my auto-ethnographic evidence dictates that some stereotypical traits of accountants, such as timeliness/accuracy/precision, are transcendental in the Kantian sense.

  • Suggestions for future research: Phenomenological accounts of task exactitude.

  • Refs: Tsoukas, Foucault, Miley and Read, Modell, JL Denis, knowledge-intensive work etc.

Thanks for brightening my day as well!

Best wishes,

Editorial Board Member.

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