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The use of accounting to help apply the principles of scientific management to business affairs is associated with the adoption of standard costing and budgetary control…
The use of accounting to help apply the principles of scientific management to business affairs is associated with the adoption of standard costing and budgetary control. This first British industry‐based study of the implementation of these calculative techniques makes use of the case study research tool to interrogate archival data relating to leading iron and steel companies. We demonstrate the adoption of standard costing and budgetary control early on (during the inter‐war period) by a single economic unit, United Steel Companies Ltd, where innovation is attributed to the engineering and scientific background and US experiences of key personnel. Elsewhere, significant management accounting change occurred only with the collapse in iron and steel corporate profitability that began to become apparent in the late 1950s. The process of accounting change is addressed and the significance for our study of the notions of evolution and historical discontinuity is examined. The paper is contextualised through an assessment of initiatives from industry‐based regulatory bodies and consideration of the economic circumstances and business conditions within which management accounting practices were the subject of radical revision.
Hoskin and Macve have suggested that the crucial discontinuity in accounting’s development over the last two centuries occurred with its use for disciplinary purposes at…
Hoskin and Macve have suggested that the crucial discontinuity in accounting’s development over the last two centuries occurred with its use for disciplinary purposes at the Springfield Armory in the USA in the 1830s and 1840s. Questions the applicability of their thesis to Britain through an examination of the manuscript records of the Dowlais Iron Company. Determines that, at Dowlais, in the mid‐nineteenth century, the accounting system was used for administrative co‐ordination and managerial decision‐making purposes, but does not appear to have been used for purposes of labour discipline, even though this was a matter of concern. Suggests that the Dowlais management, through the use of other methods to counter indiscipline, was able to develop and utilize the accounting system in other ways; also suggests that accounting in Britain may have developed somewhat differently from that in the USA. Suggests that future research into the history of accounting needs to examine the possibility of separate development paths resulting from varying socio‐economic contexts in different countries.
The purpose of the paper is to present an analysis of the disciplinary action taken against members of the founding bodies of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in…
The purpose of the paper is to present an analysis of the disciplinary action taken against members of the founding bodies of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). This exercise illuminates an aspect of accounting's past which has tended to be overlooked in conventional histories of the profession.
An analysis of the internal records of the ICAEW has been conducted. In addition, the archives of the ICAEW's predecessor bodies, entries in various censuses and contemporary sources have been reviewed for relevant material.
Analysis of the records of the ICAEW and its founding bodies reveals a number of cases where disciplinary action was taken for breaches of ethical principles. The expulsion of a member, however, was always preceded by an external “prompt” such as the member's conviction on criminal charge, his disappearance or bankruptcy. This perhaps suggests that the early professional bodies were more inclined to protect the private interests of their members rather than the public interest.
The paper's findings add to the literature on the professionalisation of the British accountancy profession. By focussing on the less‐celebrated aspects of the founders' behaviour, this paper puts the success of the profession in achieving public acceptance into sharper perspective.
Numerous studies have examined the institutional setting of accounting as a professional occupation. However, institutional deeds and outcomes derive from the behaviour of…
Numerous studies have examined the institutional setting of accounting as a professional occupation. However, institutional deeds and outcomes derive from the behaviour of individual actors, particularly those key players who drive the creation, policy development and outlook of practitioner associations. Recognising this, and in search of a more detailed understanding of the dynamics of professional formation, this study applies the prosopographical method of inquiry to accounting development in Australia during the period 1886 to 1908. Motives and actions are identified with the founding members of the Incorporated Institute of Accountants, Victoria, during this formative era, which saw key personalities transfer their allegiance to the Australasian Corporation of Public Accountants. The beliefs, preferences and ambitions of individual participants are shown to exert significant influence over the process of professional formation, highlighting the capacity of prosopographical studies to augment the predominantly vocational and institutional focus of the prior sociology of professions literature.
Explores the issues which concerned auditing practitioners more than 100 years ago and reexamines them in the present day context. These issues include: the role and scope…
Explores the issues which concerned auditing practitioners more than 100 years ago and reexamines them in the present day context. These issues include: the role and scope of the audit, audit independence, the auditor’s report, competition between auditors, litigation against auditors, and governance and regulation of the profession. Many of these concerns remain unresolved. Develops an historical perspective which helps to explain the endurance of these issues and informs policy makers in their endeavour to devise permanent solutions. Examines the determination of the profession′s early leaders to discuss the problem and publicly notes the contrast with the deafening silence emanating from their counterparts today.
– This article aims to explore the concept of amateurism as a form of critique and addition to the concepts of professionalism, professional work and education.
This article aims to explore the concept of amateurism as a form of critique and addition to the concepts of professionalism, professional work and education.
This is a theoretically driven article based upon a review of the historical and sociological literature on amateur–professional relations in various work contexts.
While amateurism is usually conceived pejoratively, the notion of doing something “for the love of it”, even if one is not formally qualified, opens up the possibilities for conceiving new forms of work, worker and sets of working relationships based upon different conceptions of expertise. Drawing upon historical and contemporary studies of the contribution of amateurism to professional work, and exploring the role of digital technologies in enabling amateurs to contribute to forms of professional practice, the article explores some of the challenges posed for work and learning, and suggests some lines of research to be explored.
There has been little to no consideration of amateurism as a positive contribution to considerations of professional work, nor exploration of the expertise and learning of amateurs.
The paper offers a survey of major Italian accounting scholars and their work for the period from 1900 to 1950. Apart from the late works of Rossi and Besta, the main…
The paper offers a survey of major Italian accounting scholars and their work for the period from 1900 to 1950. Apart from the late works of Rossi and Besta, the main focus is on the contributions by Zappa, who undoubtedly dominated the scene. In this period, as well as later, most Italian accountants and “aziendalisti” adopted the so‐called “income system”. Although its premises originated with Fabio Besta, master of the so‐called “patrimonial or proprietorship system”, the Italian School under Zappa gave this system a new theoretical basis that differed fundamentally from that of Besta. Zappa also developed the dynamic aspect of accounting and business economics that still prevails in Italy. The paper also devotes attention to other Italian scholars, less well‐known abroad. In the area of cost accounting it concentrates on the views of De Minico and his disciple Amodeo, but also mentions other contributors. The final Section deals with Italian contributions to accounting history during this period