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Article
Publication date: 28 January 2020

Ahmad Zamri Osman and Gloria Agyemang

This paper aims to argue for the need of beneficiaries’ involvement in matters impacting them. The current effort to improve waqf management and the trend of waqf studies…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to argue for the need of beneficiaries’ involvement in matters impacting them. The current effort to improve waqf management and the trend of waqf studies seems to focus on waqf financing/investment using sophisticated financial tools and inviting participation from business entities. There was no conscious effort to engage the beneficiaries/public as the means to inform and improve the way waqf properties are managed despite it being, arguably, the primary stakeholder.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a qualitative study informed by the concept of downward accountability. Interviews with staff involved in managing waqf properties are conducted. Data is interpreted, resulting in emerging themes.

Findings

This paper argues that the way waqf entity is structured and the staff’s value is important in determining whether benefit accrues to beneficiaries. Grounded on Islamic ethos, the values of individual staff is imperative in ensuring downward accountability is discharged. The closeness and empathy between staff and beneficiaries contribute towards a meaningful operationalisation of downward accountability.

Research limitations/implications

Because of the nature of methodology focusing on specific waqf practices in two specific waqf settings, the result must be interpreted within its context.

Practical implications

Waqf entity needs to have a structure where beneficiaries are meaningfully involved.

Social implications

This paper argues that the benefit of waqf establishment may not accrue to beneficiaries if it is undertaken without their engagement.

Originality/value

This paper raises the importance of engaging beneficiaries as one of the approaches in serving them. Any future project involving the targeted beneficiaries should involve them in some capacities.

Details

Journal of Islamic Accounting and Business Research, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0817

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2020

I. I. Okwuosa

This paper explores environmental accountability and downward accountability role of nongovernmental organisations (henceforth NGOs) under Extended Producer Responsibility…

Abstract

This paper explores environmental accountability and downward accountability role of nongovernmental organisations (henceforth NGOs) under Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) in the food and beverage industry of Nigeria. The paper relies on empirical data gathered from qualitative interviews of three stakeholders – accountants, Corporate Social Responsibility Officers (CSROs), CEOs and NGO CSROs. It employed theoretical conceptualisation of environmental accountability and NGO's downward accountability. Analysis shows that despite the existence of attributes of environmental accountability such as sense of responsibility on the part of corporations and citizens' rights to demand for and enforce accountability, passivity of citizens' right caused by vulnerability prevails. The finding also shows that downward accountability roles of NGOs in the industry have been framed as that of enhancing activities in the value chain. Part of this is RecyclePay project that funds education for the poor. Thus NGOs' downward (environmental) accountability in Nigeria has potential to promote environmental well-being, beneficiary's economic empowerment and education for the poor, thereby simultaneously addressing vulnerability. It shows that vulnerability may induce a different conceptualisation of environmental accountability than that of a normal democratic setting where the citizens are deemed to have right to demand and enforce (environmental) accountability. This paper contributes to our understanding of (environmental) accountability and downward accountability role of NGOs within an emerging market context.

Details

Environmentalism and NGO Accountability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-002-8

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 June 2021

Vien Chu and Belinda Luke

This study aims to investigate how non-government organisation (NGO) managers balance accountability to donors and beneficiaries and the role of felt responsibility in…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate how non-government organisation (NGO) managers balance accountability to donors and beneficiaries and the role of felt responsibility in this process.

Design/methodology/approach

Using concepts of accountability theory, practices of microenterprise development NGOs are examined in two countries – Bangladesh and Indonesia – through interviews with managers of 20 NGOs and analysis of NGOs’ publicly available data.

Findings

Findings show a shift in emphasis from a vertical view (upward to donors and downward to beneficiaries) to a horizontal view of NGO accountability. Under this view, a selective approach to donors whose mission and approaches to poverty alleviation aligned with those of the NGOs played an essential role in supporting NGOs’ internal accountability. Further, felt a responsibility to beneficiaries is identified as an important mediator balancing both upward and downward accountability. While accountability to donors and beneficiaries was interrelated, accountability to donors was considered a short-term objective and accountability to beneficiaries was considered a long-term and overriding objective.

Originality/value

Findings contribute a further understanding of the role of felt responsibility to beneficiaries as a mediator for balancing upward and downward accountability based on the perspectives of NGO managers. Reframing accountability through a horizontal view helps to balance multiple directions of NGO accountability: to self, donors and beneficiaries.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 November 2009

Rosario Laratta

The purpose of this paper is to describe two recent investigations of social services nonprofits (SSNs) in Japan and UK shed light on the subject of autonomy in relation…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe two recent investigations of social services nonprofits (SSNs) in Japan and UK shed light on the subject of autonomy in relation to accountability.

Design/methodology/approach

This is effected through an exploration of questions such as: to what extent can we say that SSNs operate “autonomously” in Japan and UK? How do executives in these agencies perceive their own statutory organisation (SO)? To whom exactly are the SSNs accountable? What accountability mechanisms are in effect? How much time do these agencies spend on meeting the requirements of these accountability measures? Do SSN executives consider that accountability demands enhance or inhibit the ability of their organisation to fulfill its mission?

Findings

A close relationship is found between the way in which executive directors view downward accountability demands (accountability to clients or society at large) and the way they perceive SOs. From the discussion of the findings, it became apparent that Japanese executives, who approached downward accountability from its external dimension (i.e. the community at large), appeared to experience a more positive relationship with SOs than their British counterparts, who approached downward accountability almost exclusively from its internal dimension (i.e. in terms of their organisation's users), resulting in their perception of statutory accountability demands as a positive or negative influence on their organisation's mission.

Originality/value

This research makes an important contribution to the understanding of collaborative relations between government and nonprofits, as well as providing meaningful insights in the search for an alternative governance system for the provision of social services under a post welfare‐state regime.

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2020

Liafisu Sina Yekini and Kemi C. Yekini

This chapter, which is in themes, starts with a survey of the rise of environmentalism for the purpose of sustainability. It then evaluates the roles of nongovernmental…

Abstract

This chapter, which is in themes, starts with a survey of the rise of environmentalism for the purpose of sustainability. It then evaluates the roles of nongovernmental organisations' (NGOs') self-regulation and government regulation on the need for accountability that ensures sustainability. NGOs' accountability is a way of making sure that stakeholders' social, environmental and economic sustainability are protected and rigorously evaluated. This chapter further examines what the enduring mechanisms should be if true accountability, which leads to sustainability, will be achieved to suggest a holistic accountability that involves downward and upward accountability. In doing so, this chapter utilised the identified five mechanisms that ensure the continuity of world sustainability, which is prima-facie, the objective of funders/donors, beneficiaries/stakeholders and the NGO's loop.

Details

Environmentalism and NGO Accountability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-002-8

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 June 2007

Brendan O'Dwyer and Jeffrey Unerman

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the evolving nature of the accountability relationship between a group of Irish non‐governmental development organisations (NGDOs…

6437

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the evolving nature of the accountability relationship between a group of Irish non‐governmental development organisations (NGDOs) and their primary governmental funder.

Design/methodology/approach

The examination is undertaken in the context of a unique funder‐led initiative to instil a broad social accountability focus among NGDOs while re‐orienting the NGDO‐funder accountability dynamic towards a partnership‐based approach – whereby the accountability entity would effectively be a supra‐organisation comprising the funder and the NGDOs. The empirical content of the paper is derived from a series of in‐depth interviews with senior individuals working within the Irish NGDO sector, along with a comprehensive analysis of documentary sources.

Findings

The partnership rhetoric central to promoting the enhanced focus on social accountability across the “virtual” accountability supra‐organisation has not been transformed into reality, and the NGDO‐funder accountability relationship within the supra‐organisation remains centred on control and justification. A lack of resources, organisational commitment, guidance, and expertise from the governmental funder has contributed to an attitude of scepticism among many NGDOs towards both the partnership rhetoric and the accompanying adoption of the central tenets of social accountability, particularly downward accountability to beneficiaries.

Research limitations/implications

The research is based on a detailed analysis in a specific context which may limit its wider applicability. Nevertheless, it adds insights to the developing academic literature on NGO accountability, with particular reference to their broader social accountabilities.

Practical implications

Although highly context‐specific, the findings of the study will be useful to researchers and policy makers interested in understanding how NGDO‐funder accountability relationships can move towards mutual accountability and genuine partnerships focused on promoting social accountability.

Originality/value

Very few in‐depth academic examinations of the evolving nature of NGDO‐funder accountability relationships in specific NGO contexts have emerged in the accountability literature. Many of the insights in this paper are derived from individuals inside organisations in the NGDO sector who are regularly addressing issues of accountability, both social and otherwise. This provides in‐depth, highly‐informed insider perspectives on the evolving nature of these relationships, especially in the context of attempts to promote more partnership‐based approaches to the delivery of development aid.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 20 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2020

Kemi C. Yekini, Liafisu Sina Yekini and Paschal Ohalehi

The nexus between Environmentalism and NGO Accountability can be established through different and diverse contexts. This edition of the journal examined these different…

Abstract

The nexus between Environmentalism and NGO Accountability can be established through different and diverse contexts. This edition of the journal examined these different contexts in the 6 different articles published in the edition. Taken together, the articles examined issues such as the work NGOs do and how they account for such in Africa, the Asian region and the global economies. The authors did this using differing theoretical perspectives and concepts. These range from use of the stakeholder salience theory, downward accountability perspective, sustainability, holistic integrated framework and critical study analysis within the context of the developing, continental and global economies. Others include the impact of NGOs on vulnerable communities and the need for environmental footprint accountability and disclosure. The edition is a compendium of information on these various themes which promises to be very useful in understanding these issues.

Article
Publication date: 1 June 2022

Hedy Jiaying Huang

The COVID-19 global pandemic has caused significant disruptions to the non-profit sector, highlighting the issues that the narrowly focused, traditional conception of…

Abstract

Purpose

The COVID-19 global pandemic has caused significant disruptions to the non-profit sector, highlighting the issues that the narrowly focused, traditional conception of governance fails to address. The purpose of this paper is to propose a contingency-based framework with its theoretical underpinnings in the existing literature, in order to support future empirical research on non-profit governance and accountability practices.

Design/methodology/approach

From a theoretical perspective, this paper synthesizes relevant existing literature and proposes a contingency-based accountability and governance framework in the non-profit sector. This paper draws on Ostrower and Stone’s (2010) contingency-based framework on boards and Hyndman and McDonnell’s (2009) conception of governance systems. This paper engages with the New Zealand and Australia context while reviewing relevant literature and relevant regulations.

Findings

The global pandemic has caused severe worldwide disruptions both socially and economically. There have been dramatic changes to the ways in which non-profit organisations (NPOs) operate. There is an urgent need to understand how such changes in the external environment impact on NPOs’ governance and accountability practices. In this context, the contingency-based accountability and governance framework proposed in this paper has important implications for non-profit research, while opening up an avenue for future research in this field.

Research limitations/implications

This paper does not involve empirical analysis.

Practical implications

This paper contributes by facilitating better understanding on how external contingencies like the COVID-19 global pandemic affect the external and internal environment of an NPO, how they impact on stakeholders and their interplay with an NPO’s governance and accountability systems. It also suggests that regulators of the non-profit sector, umbrella support organisations, and funders proactively encourage and guide NPOs to embrace a wider scope of governance and strengthen the level of governance in the sector.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the literature by proposing a contingency-based accountability and governance framework in the non-profit sector to support future research in this field. It also sheds light on competing theoretical debates relating to the conceptualisation and operationalization of accountability and governance.

Details

Pacific Accounting Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0114-0582

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 August 2020

Ciaran Connolly and Martin Kelly

Drawing on an accountability framework developed for social enterprise organizations (SEOs), this paper examines the annual report disclosure practices of SEOs in the…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on an accountability framework developed for social enterprise organizations (SEOs), this paper examines the annual report disclosure practices of SEOs in the United Kingdom in order to investigate the types of accountability disclosed by SEOs.

Design/methodology/approach

After developing a SEO database, and utilizing a bespoke document coding checklist, the annual reports of 129 SEOs were examined.

Findings

The results indicate that while SEOs would be expected to account in line with normative stakeholder theory, many do not provide constructive and voluntary accountability information to their stakeholders, at least through the annual report, and that their focus is on satisfying legal obligations.

Originality/value

In response to calls for research to better understand accountability in new organizational contexts, this paper makes two contributions: firstly, by extending prior accountability research in the NFP sector to consider organizational hybrids, it raises questions about organizational accountability and how it is discharged in situations where an organization operates as a business and yet is accountable for its social mission; secondly, assuming these organizations are driven by their business and social logics, the findings suggest that SEO accountability disclosure practices are inconsistent with the social objectives on which they are based.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 33 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 28 January 2020

Muhammad Iqmal Hisham Kamaruddin and Sofiah Md Auzair

This study aims to present an effort to construct a measurement instrument to capture Islamic accountability from “accountability for what” aspect. These measurement…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to present an effort to construct a measurement instrument to capture Islamic accountability from “accountability for what” aspect. These measurement instruments are developed by considering both social and economic natures in Islamic organisations.

Design/methodology/approach

This study defined the concept of Islamic accountability from the perspective of “accountability for what”. It is decomposed into specific items that suit an Islamic social enterprise (ISE). Next, these items are operationalised into scale items and re-composed empirically through factor analysis on data obtained from ISE stakeholders in Malaysia.

Findings

This study successfully developed an Islamic accountability measurement instruments from the “accountability for what” perspective for ISE. A total of 25 items are recognised and validated under four accountability dimensions, namely, accountability for input, accountability for output, accountability for procedural and accountability for Islamic principles and values.

Research limitations/implications

Not all measurement instruments are fit for every Islamic organisation type because of the different characteristics of Islamic organisations.

Practical implications

Developed items can be used as part of Islamic accountability index, especially by ISE and other similar organisations to measure their accountability practices. Besides, these developed items can also be adopted for reporting purposes. In the case of Malaysia, respective government agencies, such as the Companies Commission of Malaysia , the Registry of Society, the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development as well as the Malaysia Institute of Accountant, should have a look at the developed items to be considered into their respective guidelines or standards.

Originality/value

This study is believed to be a pioneering study in developing measurement instruments of Islamic accountability specific for ISE. It proposes measurement instruments of Islamic accountability that can be re-used for future research and is among the few studies of ISE.

Details

International Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Finance and Management, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8394

Keywords

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