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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2018

Brendan M. O’Mahony, Becky Milne and Kevin Smith

Intermediaries facilitate communication with many types of vulnerable witnesses during police investigative interviews. The purpose of this paper is to find out how…

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Abstract

Purpose

Intermediaries facilitate communication with many types of vulnerable witnesses during police investigative interviews. The purpose of this paper is to find out how intermediaries engage in their role in cases where the vulnerable witness presents with one type of vulnerability, namely, dissociative identity disorder (DID).

Design/methodology/approach

In phase 1, data were obtained from the National Crime Agency Witness Intermediary Team (WIT) to ascertain the demand for intermediaries in DID cases in England and Wales within a three-year period. In phase 2 of this study four intermediaries who had worked with witnesses with DID completed an in-depth questionnaire detailing their experience.

Findings

Referrals for DID are currently incorporated within the category of personality disorder in the WIT database. Ten definite DID referrals and a possible additional ten cases were identified within this three-year period. Registered Intermediary participants reported having limited experience and limited specific training in dealing with DID prior to becoming a Registered Intermediary. Furthermore, intermediaries reported the many difficulties that they experienced with DID cases in terms of how best to manage the emotional personalities that may present.

Originality/value

This is the first published study where intermediaries have shared their experiences about DID cases. It highlights the complexities of obtaining a coherent account from such individuals in investigative interviews.

Article
Publication date: 31 July 2019

Gloria Agyemang, Brendan O’Dwyer and Jeffrey Unerman

The purpose of this paper is to offer a retrospective and prospective analysis of the themes explored in the 2006 Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal special…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to offer a retrospective and prospective analysis of the themes explored in the 2006 Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal special issue on non-governmental organisation (NGO) accountability.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is a reflective review essay.

Findings

The paper outlines how a number of themes in the 2006 special issue addressing downward accountability, hierarchical accountability and management control have been subsequently developed in a selection of papers from the accounting literature. The development of these themes leads to several suggestions for future research in NGO accountability.

Originality/value

The paper offers a systematic, original perspective on recent developments in certain areas of the field of NGO accountability.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 32 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 15 June 2020

Brendan Thomas O'Connell, Paul De Lange, Ann Martin-Sardesai and Gloria Agyemang

The purpose of this paper is to examine prominent issues and knowledge contributions from research exploring measurement and assessment of accounting research, impact and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine prominent issues and knowledge contributions from research exploring measurement and assessment of accounting research, impact and engagement. This paper also provides an overview of the other papers presented in this AAAJ Special Issue and draws from their findings to scope out future impactful research opportunities in this area.

Design/methodology/approach

Consists of a review and examination of the prior literature and the other papers published in this AAAJ Special Issue.

Findings

The paper identifies and summarises three key research themes in the extant literature: research productivity of accounting academics; the rise of the “Corporate University” and commodification of research; and, the benefits and limitations of Research Assessment Exercises. It draws upon work within these research themes to set out four broad areas for future impactful research.

Research limitations/implications

The value of this paper rests with collating and synthesising several important research themes on the nature and impact of measurement and assessment of accounting research, impact and engagement, and in prompting future extensions of this work through setting out areas for further innovative research in the area.

Practical implications

The research examined in this paper and the future research avenues proposed are highly relevant to university academics, administrators and regulators/policymakers. They also offer important insights into matters of accounting measurement, accountability, and control more generally.

Originality/value

This paper adds to vibrant existing streams of research in the area by bringing together authors from different areas of accounting research for this AAAJ Special Issue. In scoping out an agenda for impactful research in the nature and impact of measurement and assessment of accounting research, impact and engagement, this paper also draws attention to underexplored issues pertaining to areas such as the “lived experience” of academics in the corporatised university and envisioning what a future “optimal” system of measurement and assessment of research quality might look like?

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 33 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 October 2016

Brendan O’Brien

The purpose of this paper is to highlight legislative and procedural problems with the implementation across England and Wales of Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs).

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to highlight legislative and procedural problems with the implementation across England and Wales of Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs).

Design/methodology/approach

Through a review of current and planned PSPOs across England and Wales.

Findings

A patchwork quilt of unenforceable and vague legislation will only cause enforcement agencies to become confused and for potentially innocent people to be convicted.

Originality/value

The author does not believe any similar papers have been published.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 October 2021

Hang Ngoc My Le, Brendan Thomas O’Connell and Maryam Safari

Drawing from Upper-Echelons Theory (UET), this paper aims to examine whether an increasing number of board members studying and working overseas, especially in Anglo…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing from Upper-Echelons Theory (UET), this paper aims to examine whether an increasing number of board members studying and working overseas, especially in Anglo countries, provides some impetus for increased corporate environmental disclosures (CED) in Vietnam.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used quantitative data collection and analysis. The data collection involved a content analysis of annual, sustainability and integrated reports to capture the quality and quantity of CED. The authors subsequently developed ordered probit models to quantitatively test the hypotheses.

Findings

The authors find that board members studying in Anglo countries positively impact firms’ levels of CED in emerging economies. However, overseas work experience is found to be an insignificant explanatory variable. Further, the findings suggest that, in Vietnam, Chairs appear to be more influential than chief executive officers in affecting CED levels.

Practical implications

Despite the positive influence of overseas study, the authors find overall levels of CED in Vietnam remain relatively low. This suggests the necessity of dialogue about potential reform in CED policies, which could involve the introduction of mandatory reporting requirements. In addition, to enhance sustainability disclosures, shareholders should appoint board members who possess international qualifications.

Originality/value

This study adds to the literature exploring the impacts of Anglo cultural traits of board members on CED levels, within an economy transitioning from a communist ideology to a market-oriented system context. The connection between international study and cultural norms, beliefs and traditions in these countries and their positive influence on directors’ values and attitudes towards CED have not yet been studied. The study also extends UET by examining the potential positive influence of different national contexts on board members’ education levels.

Article
Publication date: 15 June 2021

Nicola Beatson, Paul de Lange, Brendan O'Connell, Meredith Tharapos and Jeffrey K. Smith

The purpose of this paper is to consider what factors influence the ability of academic staff to remain motivated and to persist in their work environment during the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to consider what factors influence the ability of academic staff to remain motivated and to persist in their work environment during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tinto’s (2017) model of student motivation and persistence is reconceptualised to apply to the academic staff by considering their self-efficacy beliefs, sense of belonging and perceptions of career relevance on their motivation levels and adaption to a new environment.

Design/methodology/approach

Utilising Tinto’s (2017) reconceptualised model for academics, this study provides insights into motivation and capacity to adapt during the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper presents observations and reflections from five academics from three universities across two countries in relation to self-efficacy, sense of belonging and perception of career relevance.

Findings

The findings of this study state that self-efficacy beliefs, a sense of belonging and perceptions of career relevance combine to drive both academics’ motivation levels and their ability to adapt to the changing landscape. Self-efficacy was influenced by factors such as struggles with adaptation to new online technologies and researching and teaching in a virtual environment. Academics’ sense of belonging was found to be challenged in unprecedented ways because of physical isolation and sometimes unfavourable home working environments. Perceptions of career relevance were found to be challenged by adverse developments such as reduced promotional opportunities, cuts in resourcing and job insecurity.

Originality/value

This paper makes three important contributions. First, Tinto’s (2017) model of student motivation and persistence is extended to examine academic motivation, adaption and persistence. Second, the model is applied to a crisis where staff face greater strain in maintaining connection to their colleagues and their university. Third, the influence of the COVID-19 crisis is examined by using the reconceptualised Tinto (2017) model in the context of accounting, as accounting international student enrolments and associated revenue streams have been impacted significantly more than those of many other disciplines.

Details

Accounting Research Journal, vol. 34 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1030-9616

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 19 June 2017

Gloria Agyemang, Brendan O’Dwyer, Jeffrey Unerman and Mariama Awumbila

The purpose of this paper is to ascertain how upward accountability processes can be enabling in, or constraining to, the effective deployment of development aid funding.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to ascertain how upward accountability processes can be enabling in, or constraining to, the effective deployment of development aid funding.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper derives its primary insights from in-depth interviews and focus groups with non-governmental organization (NGO) fieldworkers working and delivering development aid in Northern Ghana. It analyses inductively the perspectives of fieldworkers to explain their experiences of upward accountability.

Findings

The fieldworkers’ perception of upward accountability was mainly one of external control, in response to which they enacted a skilful form of compliance accountability. This perception of control failed to stifle their initiative and intrinsic commitment to beneficiaries. The fieldworkers craved “conversations for accountability”, in which they had a voice in the development of upward accountability metrics, thereby enabling them to fulfil their sense of felt responsibility to beneficiaries. While aspects of “conversations for accountability” were emerging in fieldworker-funder interactions, it was unclear to what extent funders were committed to further advancing them. Overall, the analysis unveils how felt responsibility mediates for, and partly diminishes, the perceived negative impacts on aid effectiveness of upward accountability processes informed by a focus on control.

Originality/value

The authors examine the potential of upward accountability processes using in-depth analyses of the actual experiences of those involved in delivering NGO services at the grassroots level. The authors contribute to emerging work in this vein by enriching the authors’ understanding of local constituencies’ experiences of accountability processes more generally, especially the impact these mechanisms have on NGO operational activities. The authors also unveil the mediating role fieldworkers’ “felt responsibility” to beneficiaries’ plays in moderating the perceived negative impacts on aid effectiveness of upward accountability processes.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 30 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 16 March 2022

Brendan O'Connell, Meredith Tharapos, Paul De Lange and Nicola Beatson

The purpose of this study is to provide a polemic on the evolution of universities and business schools over the past two decades. During this period, universities have…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to provide a polemic on the evolution of universities and business schools over the past two decades. During this period, universities have increasingly adopted a self-interested stance using business-like practices and behaviours to justify their transformation. The authors provide recommendations aimed at enhancing universities’ contributions and relevance to society, increasing their sustainability broadly defined and better positioning them to help solve wicked problems in a post-COVID-19 world.

Design/methodology/approach

This polemic analyses prior literature relating to the evolution of universities and uses this to generate a framework for ways forward for their improvement.

Findings

The authors argue that the evolution of universities into entities with missions and operations designed to mimic business and commercial imperatives has yielded undesirable outcomes including the muddling of the core mission of universities, alienation of key stakeholders and an excessive focus on income growth. Business schools face a tension between forging their own, unique identities and simultaneously striving to meet university university objectives. We term this “the Business School identity paradox”. The authors contend that the way forward requires senior management to re-discover the essence of what it means to be a university, re-establish collegial decision-making within universities that includes built-in feedback loops and a fundamental emphasis on developing graduates with an enlightened perspective that goes beyond technical skills.

Originality/value

This paper is novel in that it analyses the evolution of the “Enterprise University” some 20 years after this term was first coined and in a radically changed environment following the COVID-19 pandemic. This analysis is also forward-looking as the authors re-imagine universities and business schools by identifying opportunities for renewal and improvement in their focus and societal impact. The authors also develop a schema that identifies major influences on universities and business schools, the impact of COVID-19 and strategies for them post-COVID-19.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 February 2021

Lan Anh Nguyen, Brendan O'Connell, Michael Kend, Van Anh Thi Pham and Gillian Vesty

The study explores accountants' views of the likelihood of widespread accounting manipulation in the emerging economy, Vietnam. Applying the fraud triangle framework, we…

Abstract

Purpose

The study explores accountants' views of the likelihood of widespread accounting manipulation in the emerging economy, Vietnam. Applying the fraud triangle framework, we examine accountants' responses to management pressure, manipulation opportunities and perceptions of how they rationalize their decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses an experimental methodology involving 592 Vietnamese accountants as participants. Post-experiment field interviews were conducted with eight highly experienced accountants.

Findings

Our findings indicate that accounting manipulation is perceived to be common in Vietnam. The findings reveal that there is no differentiation between manipulation of accounting transactions with or without management pressure and no differentiation between collective gain or individual gain.

Research limitations/implications

While the study focused on accountants' perceptions of accounting manipulation, these views may change over time. The impact of law reforms and the potential for prosecution under the force of law provisions could alter these perceptions.

Practical implications

The study findings alert regulators, government authorities and auditors of the perceptions and views in relation to accounting manipulation and the potential for fraud in Vietnam. Auditors could use help from forensic specialists to uncover unethical behaviors identified in this study.

Originality/value

The fraud triangle framework is used to shed light on fraud through the examination of accounting manipulation in Vietnam. We contribute to the relevant accounting literature with insights into accountants' motivations toward conducting questionable accounting transactions. The contributions we make draw attention to preconceptions of Asian societies; in particular, accounting actions to motivate collectivist gains. While we shed further light on fraudulent accounting, we conclude that the fraud triangle framework does not necessarily articulate fraud well in relation to accounting manipulation in emerging economies.

Details

Journal of Accounting in Emerging Economies, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-1168

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 August 2020

Lan Anh Nguyen, Gillian Vesty, Michael Kend, Quan Nguyen and Brendan O'Connell

The purpose of this paper is to understand the institutionally driven changes impacting organizational accounting manipulation in Vietnam’s emerging transitional economy…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand the institutionally driven changes impacting organizational accounting manipulation in Vietnam’s emerging transitional economy. Specifically, this study explore how Vietnamese accountants and regulators explain questionable accounting transactions and their rationalization for those practices, especially during the period of accounting system transition from Vietnamese accounting standards to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses interview-based methods involving 22 Vietnamese accountants, financial managers, audit partners and regulators.

Findings

This study have found dysfunctional approaches to revenue and expense recognition underpinned by institutional theory. At play is a combination of opportunities relating to weak accounting standards and organizational controls; management pressure; and a desire to avoid unwanted scrutiny from Vietnamese regulators.

Research limitations/implications

This study does not include the views of non-financial managers or other accounting users. Future research could focus more on the perceptions of these other stakeholder groups.

Practical implications

Accounting manipulation can be collusive, therefore, regulators should have a stricter view and broader examination in the monitoring process.

Originality/value

This study examine accounting manipulation through the lens of New Institutional Sociology and also share the views of the accountants and regulators. This study argue that weak accounting standards are not the only factors contributing to accounting manipulation. When evaluating the existence of accounting manipulation, this paper find a combination of factors including: opportunities for manipulation, pressure from management and the rationale behind the conduct. These factors should be interpreted in context.

Details

Pacific Accounting Review, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0114-0582

Keywords

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