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Article
Publication date: 18 September 2007

John Francis McKernan and Katarzyna Kosmala

The paper's purpose is to use religious thought to inform accounting, and in particular to make a contribution to the ongoing debates concerning the merits of rules‐ and…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper's purpose is to use religious thought to inform accounting, and in particular to make a contribution to the ongoing debates concerning the merits of rules‐ and principles‐based accounting systems and the value of a rule‐overriding requirement of fair presentation in financial reporting.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper applies to accounting a conception of religion that is heavily influenced by Jacques Derrida's writings on religion and deconstruction. In order to clarify the nature of this religion and to facilitate appreciation of its significance for accounting it is progressively recast, in the paper, first in terms of deconstruction and then in terms of a demand for an infinite justice.

Findings

At the core of the paper, religious responsibility, as a demand for justice, in accounting is explored through Derrida's analysis of the relation between justice and law, which is found to have clear application to accounting in terms of an aporetic tension between an infinite demand for fairness in accounting and accounting regulation.

Practical implications

The analysis implies that the pursuit of justice as fairness in accounting, “doing the truth” in accounting, will always demand the negotiation of an unstable and difficult mediation between the poles of regulation and fairness, the calculable and the incalculable, the possible and the impossible.

Originality/value

The paper draws on the postsecular current in religion to make a novel contribution to the critical and interdisciplinary awareness in accounting that has begun to unsettle the hold that certain modernist dichotomies, such as that of myth and reason, have had on accounting thought.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2004

John Francis McKernan and Katarzyna Kosmala MacLullich

This paper analyses what is seen as a crisis of authority in financial reporting. It considers the view that an element of authority may be restored to accounting through…

Abstract

This paper analyses what is seen as a crisis of authority in financial reporting. It considers the view that an element of authority may be restored to accounting through communicative reason. The paper argues that the justice‐oriented rationality of traditional, Habermasian, communicative ethics is incapable of providing a solid foundation for the re‐authorisation of financial reporting. The paper argues that a more adequate foundation might be found in an enlarged communicative ethics that allows space to the other of justice‐oriented reason. The inspiration for the enlargement is found in Ricoeur's analysis of narrative, his exploration of its role in the figuration of identity, and in his biblical hermeneutics which reveals the necessity of an active dialectic of love and justice.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 17 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 29 March 2011

Katarzyna Kosmala and John Francis McKernan

This conceptual paper aims to elucidate and explore the implications for critical accounting and management of some of the ethical dimensions of Foucault's thought…

Abstract

Purpose

This conceptual paper aims to elucidate and explore the implications for critical accounting and management of some of the ethical dimensions of Foucault's thought, hitherto comparatively neglected by critical scholars.

Design/methodology/approach

Foucault's late works are read as offering a view of the cultivation of ethical agency through the work of the self on the self, through care of the self, which at least implicitly gives priority to care for the other. This notion of moral agency is situated in the context of the broad spectrum of Foucault's influence on critical accounting and management thought, and its significance for professional responsibility in the workplace is explored.

Findings

It was found that the accounting and management scholarship that has drawn on Foucault's work on care of the self tends to marginalize its ethical dimension, in particular by neglecting the role of openness to, and responsibility for, the other, in the processes of ethical self‐creation.

Originality/value

It is emphasised that in his later works Foucault puts responsiveness to difference and responsibility for the other at the centre of his ethical project of the self, and it is argued that this opening up of the moral dimension in his work has the potential to enrich the ways in which critical scholarship addresses issues such as professional agency and responsibility, identity politics, and governance in the workplace.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 2 December 2019

Ken McPhail and Carolyn J. Cordery

The purpose of this paper is to reflect on the 2004 AAAJ special issue (SI): “Accounting and theology, an introduction: Initiating a dialogue between immediacy and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to reflect on the 2004 AAAJ special issue (SI): “Accounting and theology, an introduction: Initiating a dialogue between immediacy and eternity,” the relative immediate impact of the call for papers and the relevance of the theme to address issues in accounting today and in the future.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is a reflection and is framed around three different modes of engagement with new perspectives as identified by Orlikowski (2015). These are religion as phenomenon, as perspective and as a worldview. The authors draw on Burrell and Morgan’s (1979) framework in order to explore the ontological and epistemological blinkers that have limited the attempts to explore accounting from a theological perspective.

Findings

The paper argues that historical and current structures can limit the manner in which accounting research uses theological perspectives. Indeed, the concerns of the initial SI remain – that the contemporary economic and knowledge system is in crisis and alternative ways of questioning are required to understand and respond to this system.

Research limitations/implications

As a reflection, this paper is subject to limitations of author bias relating to our beliefs, ethnicities and culture. The authors have sought to reduce these by drawing on a wide range of sources, critical analysis and the input of feedback from other scholars. Nevertheless, the narrative of impact remains a continuing story.

Originality/value

In drawing on both an original SI guest editor and a scholar for whom the 2004 SI has become a touchstone and springboard, this paper provides multiple viewpoints on the issue of accounting and theology.

Details

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

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 20 August 2018

Daniel Murphy and Lee Moerman

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the disruption to civic accountability by strategic corporate action in the form of SLAPP suits.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the disruption to civic accountability by strategic corporate action in the form of SLAPP suits.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper provides empirical evidence of the discursive processes underpinning participatory and emancipatory accountability regimes through the lens of deliberative democracy and the Habermasian ideal of the public sphere.

Findings

Within this paper, it is argued that the strategic use of SLAPPs by corporations presents a danger to both mechanistic and virtuous forms of accountability regardless of what deliberative democratic theory is adopted. Habermas’ theory of communicative action and notion of the “public sphere” is utilised to demonstrate how SLAPPs can result in the colonisation of public discursive arenas to prevent others providing alternative (in form) and counter (in view) accounts of corporate behaviour and thus act to limit opportunities for corporate accountability.

Social implications

This paper throws light on a practice being utilised by corporations to limit public participation in democratic and participatory accountability processes. Strategic use of SLAPPs limit the “ability” for citizens to provide an alternative “account” of corporate behaviour.

Originality/value

This paper is original in that it analyses the impact on accountability of strategic corporate practice of issuing SLAPP suits to “chill” public political discussion and limit protest about issues of social and civic importance. The paper extends the critical accounting literature into improving dialogic and participatory accountability regimes.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 31 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 17 June 2019

Nihel Chabrak, Jim Haslam and Helen Oakes

The purpose of this paper is to reflect a critical perspective drawing from phenomenology, especially informed by a reading of Heidegger, to enhance and extend…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to reflect a critical perspective drawing from phenomenology, especially informed by a reading of Heidegger, to enhance and extend appreciation of the need to question accounting’s meaning or delineation and how research might be undertaken into the accounting phenomenon and related areas.

Design/methodology/approach

To illustrate and clarify argumentation in terms of accounting mobilization and the domain of accounting research, the mainstream and strongly positivistic accounting perspective adopted in the USA is critically assessed. At the same time, the authors elaborate how much of interpretive research (including much of that labeled critical) is also lacking in terms of the perspective articulated here.

Findings

The paper stresses the case for questioning the taken-for-granted and conventional. It promotes reflexivity, cautious pragmatism, attentiveness to the value of the existing, responsibility to difference and otherness and openness to new possibilities as part of a deeper critical orientation.

Originality/value

The paper draws from phenomenology, especially in Heideggerian terms to open-up new conversational domain to debate accounting.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 32 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 13 November 2017

Nohora García

Abstract

Details

Understanding Mattessich and Ijiri: A Study of Accounting Thought
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-841-3

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Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Shireen J. Fahey, John R. Labadie and Noel Meyers

The aim of this paper is to present the challenges external drivers and internal inertia faced by curriculum designers and implementers at institutions of higher…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to present the challenges external drivers and internal inertia faced by curriculum designers and implementers at institutions of higher education. The challenges to academics from competing factors are presented: internal resistance to changing existing curricula vs the necessity to continuously evolve programmes to reflect a dynamic, uncertain future. The necessity to prepare future leaders to face global issues such as climate change, dictates changing curricula to reflect changing personal, environmental and societal needs.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses the case study method to examine two models of climate change curriculum design and renewal. One model, from an Australian university, is based upon national education standards and the second is a non-standards-based curriculum design, developed and delivered by a partnership of four North American universities.

Findings

The key findings from this study are that the highest level of participation by internal-to-the-programme academics and administrators is required. Programme quality, delivery and content alignment may be compromised with either stand-alone course delivery and learning outcomes, or if courses are developed independently of others in the programme. National educational standards can be effective tools to guide course and programme management, monitoring, review and updating.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for postgraduate level curricula design, implementation and programme evaluation.

Originality/value

The paper is the first to compare, contrast and critique a national standards-based, higher education curriculum and a non-standards-based curriculum.

Details

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-7003

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1962

THE improvement in the British standard of living is generally desired. Politicians have not only subscribed to that ideal but some of them have indicated the rate at…

Abstract

THE improvement in the British standard of living is generally desired. Politicians have not only subscribed to that ideal but some of them have indicated the rate at which we should advance. There are, however, certain trends in the country's economic life which must be reversed if we are to make any progress in that direction.

Details

Work Study, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0043-8022

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2016

Karim Hegazy and Anne Stafford

This paper aims to conduct a comparative study by examining the Audit Committee (AC) set-up, roles, responsibilities and developments in two distinct English public sector…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to conduct a comparative study by examining the Audit Committee (AC) set-up, roles, responsibilities and developments in two distinct English public sector settings, namely, foundation trusts (FTs) and local authorities (LAs).

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is exploratory and explanatory in nature and uses a qualitative case study approach framed in institutional theory. It is based on semi-structured interviews with AC chairs, external and internal auditors and finance directors triangulated with meeting observations and documentation review.

Findings

The study finds that public sector ACs have a large and diverse role which extends beyond challenging/monitoring responsibilities. Influenced by the New Public Management ideology, the AC has developed more rapidly in FTs due to imposed regulation contrasting with the slower progress in LAs due to its still voluntary adoption. Nevertheless, in both environments, there is a developing understanding and growing competence within the AC in terms of their assurance role where the focus has shifted from an emphasis on function and on transacting business through following a manual, to a more strategic-looking approach.

Research limitations/implications

Due to the complexity of public sector settings, and by using an approach framed within institutional theory, the study contributes by challenging a simple notion of isomorphism as an explanation of AC roles, responsibilities and development in two distinct public sector environments. Furthermore, the study recognizes that there is a need to ensure ACs are appropriate to their institutional setting and organizational context.

Originality/value

Most AC studies have focused on private sector contexts. This paper explores the phenomenon in a different organizational context, namely, as a public sector comparative case study.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 31 no. 8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

Keywords

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