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The Importance of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) for Accounting Education

Advances in Accounting Education: Teaching and Curriculum Innovations

ISBN: 978-1-78441-588-4, eISBN: 978-1-78441-587-7

ISSN: 1085-4622

Publication date: 5 January 2015

Abstract

Purpose

Discuss the importance of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) to accounting education.

Methodology/approach

This study first examines the current trends and events underlying the reasons for increasing the incorporation of the FCPA and related anti-bribery issues into the accounting curriculum. Then best practices of increasing FCPA coverage and presenting the material to students are presented and explained.

Findings

The recent increase in FCPA and anti-bribery prosecutions, the penalties assessed, and the costs of internal investigation and compliance are significant. In addition, corruption is a way of life in many countries. Thus, the need for consultants, auditors, and accounting firms knowledgeable about FCPA issues is growing, especially as the FCPA has a books and records provision and demands effective internal control. However, universities have been slow to acknowledge this trend.

Pedagogical strategies for including FCPA issues in the accounting curriculum range from incorporating role-playing and developing case studies in existing classes to creating separate stand-alone FCPA and anti-bribery classes.

Social implications

Accounting students, during their future business careers, will be better prepared to identify, evaluate, and choose appropriate actions/responses when faced with FCPA and bribery situations.

Originality/value

Despite the underlying trends that indicate the importance of integrating FCPA issues into the accounting education, many universities have lagged in introducing this subject area into their curriculum. This study is the first to provide the rationale and multiple pedagogical methods for facilitating accounting student education about identifying FCPA issues and selecting proper responses.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgments

The authors participated in a panel discussion on the importance of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) to accounting education at the American Accounting Association’s (AAA) 2013 Annual Meeting in Anaheim, CA on August 7, 2013. The authors thank the audience for their insightful comments and discussion that contributed to this paper.

Citation

Holtzblatt, M., Needles, B., Tschakert, N., Wong, M. and Klink, J. (2015), "The Importance of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) for Accounting Education", Advances in Accounting Education: Teaching and Curriculum Innovations (Advances in Accounting Education, Vol. 16), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 65-87. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1085-462220150000016004

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015 Emerald Group Publishing Limited