We must acknowledge the importance of intangibles in today’s economies and the controversy over the accounting and reporting of these assets. For this reason, the purpose of this paper is to synthesize the lessons learned from research to date and identify gaps in that research that would be useful to academics and practitioners.
The literature review was conducted after an analysis of the most important academic databases in the period of 1990-2013: ABI Inform Complete, CSIS, EconLit, ISOC, Journal Citation Reports, Scopus, Emerald, Springer, and Google Scholar.
The authors offer a summary of the main gaps in the literature on intellectual capital disclosures, among which the authors perceive a need for increased qualitative or explanatory research, which would allow further analysis of such decisions.
Specifically, the main problem encountered in the research on voluntary disclosure of intangibles appears to relate to the type of methodology used, which is usually quantitative or descriptive.
Given that the principal limitations in the field of the disclosure of intangibles have been discussed, the authors conclude by indicating the principal directions for future research.
Qualitative analysis is absent in the literature the authors reviewed, and considered it fundamental to understanding this type of disclosure. In fact, the development of future lines of research could provide better-quality intangible asset reporting.
Although there are previous studies on this topic, the authors believe that the main contribution of this study is to offer an integrated framework of existing findings concerning decisions by companies to disclose information on intangibles, a topic on which previous literature is sparse.
Castilla-Polo, F. and GALLARDO-VÁZQUEZ, D. (2016), "The main topics of research on disclosures of intangible assets: a critical review", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 29 No. 2, pp. 323-356. https://doi.org/10.1108/AAAJ-11-2014-1864Download as .RIS
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