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Article
Publication date: 11 August 2021

Michael Thomas Hayden, Ruth Mattimoe and Lisa Jack

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to a better understanding of the financial decision-making process of farmers and to highlight the potential role that improved…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to a better understanding of the financial decision-making process of farmers and to highlight the potential role that improved farm financial management (FFM) could play in developing sustainable farm enterprises.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts a qualitative approach with 27 semi-structured interviews exploring farmers’ financial decision-making processes. Subsequently, the interview findings were presented to a focus group. Sensemaking theory is adopted as a theoretical lens to develop the empirical findings.

Findings

The evidence highlights that FFM has a dual role to play in farmer decision-making. Some FFM activities may act as a cue, which triggers a sensebreaking activity, causing the farmer to enter a process of sensemaking whilst some/other FFM activities are drawn upon to provide a sensegiving role in the sensemaking process. The role of FFM in farmer decision-making is strongly influenced by the decision type (strategic or operational) being undertaken and the farm type (dairy, tillage or beef) in operation.

Originality/value

The literature suggests that the majority of farmers spend little time on financial management. However, there are farmers who have quite a high level of engagement in FFM activities, when undertaking strategic farm expansion decisions. Those FFM activities help them to navigate through operational decision-making and to make sense of their strategic decision-making.

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2019

Ahmed Othman Rashwan Kholeif and Lisa Jack

This paper aims to use Stones’ strong structuration theory (SST) that combines Giddens’ duality and Archer’s analytical dualism to deal with the paradox of embedded…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to use Stones’ strong structuration theory (SST) that combines Giddens’ duality and Archer’s analytical dualism to deal with the paradox of embedded agency, focussing on resistance, in the budgeting literature. It also applies this framework to an illustrative case study that examines a failed attempt to implement performance-based budgeting (PBB) in the Egyptian Sales Tax Department (ESTD).

Design/methodology/approach

The authors have used SST as an analytical framework. Longitudinal case study data were collected from interviews, observations, discussions and documentary analysis and from publicly available reports and other media issued by the World Bank.

Findings

The SST framework identifies the circumstances in which middle managers as embedded agency have limited possibilities to change their dispositions to act and identify opportunities for emancipation in the wider social context in which they are embedded. The official explanation for the failure to implement PBB in Egypt was obstruction by middle managers. The findings of this study provide an alternative explanation to that published by the World Bank for the failure to institutionalise PBB in Egypt. It was found that the middle managers were the real supporters of PBB. Other parties and existing laws and regulations contributed to the failure of PBB.

Research limitations/implications

As a practical implication of the study, the analysis presented here offers an alternative interpretation of the failure of the Egyptian project for monitoring and evaluation to that published by the World Bank. This case and similar cases may enhance the understanding of how and when monitoring and evaluation technologies should be introduced at the global level to manage conflicts of interest between agencies and beneficiaries.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the extant management accounting literature on the use of ST in addressing the paradox of embedded agency in making or resisting structural change. It uses SST to integrate Giddens’ ST with critical realist theory, incorporating duality and dualism in a stronger model of structuration. The SST framework offers a means of analysing case studies that result from interactions and conjunctures between different groups of actors at different ontological levels. The paper also examines the issue of embedded agency in budgeting research using an illustrative case study from a developing country, Egypt.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. 16 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Article
Publication date: 9 April 2018

Georgios Makrygiannakis and Lisa Jack

The purpose of this paper is to explore the application of social theory as conceptual methodology in the design of case study research.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the application of social theory as conceptual methodology in the design of case study research.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors examine how social theory can be used to design case study research when the choice of theory is made before or during the empirical enquiry. Rather than simply presenting the elements of design, the focus is on the ways the elements relate and connect to each other, i.e. how a researcher can design each step to facilitate the work that needs to be done in the others.

Findings

A circular research design starts and finishes with the theory. The conceptual tools that social theories offer can be used to guide researchers into the empirical field and out of it. A conceptually driven design facilitates the interconnection between the various steps of a research project and can keep theory, research problem and data closely connected.

Research limitations/implications

There is a role for systematic research design in interpretative case studies in management accounting and control. Although this paper uses strong structuration theory, the circular design proposed can be applied for other social theories and methodologies where an abductive approach is appropriate.

Originality/value

There are very few papers that explicitly demonstrate the implications of research design choices in case study research. In particular, the authors contribute to discussions on the conduct of interpretative research in management control and demonstrate that, especially for structuration theory, a conceptual methodology approach to research design, data collection and analysis can lead to theoretical insight.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. 26 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

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Article
Publication date: 10 June 2020

Regina Frei, Lisa Jack and Steve Brown

This article sheds light onto the increasing problem of product returns, which is exacerbated by growing e-commerce. Many retailers and academics are oblivious to the…

Abstract

Purpose

This article sheds light onto the increasing problem of product returns, which is exacerbated by growing e-commerce. Many retailers and academics are oblivious to the nature and scale of this challenge. Interdisciplinary research is needed to develop supporting theory, and cross-functional teams are required to implement measures addressing economic, ecological and social sustainability issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The initial project adopted a multi-case study approach, whereby returns processes were mapped, vulnerabilities identified and a returns cost calculator was developed.

Findings

Product returns processes are usually complicated, prone to internal and external fraud, inefficient and lack sustainability. They can generate considerable losses to the business, especially as returns data are often not systematically collected, monitored or reported to senior management. There are important implications for strategic and operational management, namely the need to develop a concept for Lean returns systems.

Originality/value

Product returns are a unique and understudied but growing field in academic research, with only few publications over the last two decades. Yet the phenomenon is causing increasing problems in business and society. Robust solutions could achieve great financial and non-financial impacts.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 40 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 22 August 2018

Lyn Daff and Lisa Jack

The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into the importance of accountants’ networks inside organisations, the parties who comprise those networks and how…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into the importance of accountants’ networks inside organisations, the parties who comprise those networks and how accountants go about building and maintaining their networks. It also illustrates the use of strong structuration theory, which specifically considers the networks that surround agents. The theoretical discussion highlights the significance of communication as agency in the context of accounting practice through a strong structuration perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach to the inquiry was adopted. Interviews were conducted with 30 Australian accountants from 22 not-for-profit organisations. A thematic approach was used to analyse the transcripts. Structuration theory, supplemented by strong structuration, informed the study.

Findings

The interviewees attested to the importance of communication and developing networks within their organisations. They actively sought to expand and enhance their networks. The accountants played a pivotal role in networks and they pursued both horizontal and vertical relations. The accountants’ knowledge of organisational positions and perceptions of their own roles were used strategically in attempts to alter the internal structures of networked others.

Research limitations/implications

The interviewed accountants worked in not-for-profit organisations and this may influence the findings. Future research might consider accountants working in for-profit organisations. The study provides insights into strategies to develop intra-organisational networks.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the meagre literature regarding accountants’ networks within organisations. It provides insights that may assist accountants in enhancing their own networks. Although structuration theory is well-established in accounting research, the enrichments offered by strong structuration are illustrated in this study.

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 3 October 2019

Lisa Jack and Olivier Saulpic

This paper aims to present an understanding of what it means to infuse teaching with qualitative research and to introduce the papers in the special issue.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an understanding of what it means to infuse teaching with qualitative research and to introduce the papers in the special issue.

Design/methodology/approach

This is an introductory essay that provides a brief overview and analysis of the ideas to be found in the issue.

Findings

The special issue contributes to the understanding of the integration of teaching and research by showing how the authors as actors, as teacher-researchers, bring not just the findings but also reflexivity into the classroom and take knowledge out into both research and teaching. The papers in this issue all consider the agency of teachers in bringing an epistemology into the classroom, and in developing that epistemology.

Originality/value

The papers in this issue go beyond concepts of research-led teaching and the research-teaching nexus towards reflective pieces that develop understanding of epistemology rather than more conventional reports of classroom interventions.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Article
Publication date: 14 October 2019

Lisa Jack and Olivier Saulpic

This paper aims to present an understanding of what it means to infuse teaching with qualitative research and to introduce the papers in the special issue.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an understanding of what it means to infuse teaching with qualitative research and to introduce the papers in the special issue.

Design/methodology/approach

This is an introductory essay that provides a brief overview and analysis of the ideas to be found in the issue.

Findings

The special issue contributes to the understanding of the integration of teaching and research by showing how the authors as actors, as teacher-researchers, bring not just the findings but also reflexivity into the classroom and take knowledge out into both research and teaching. The papers in this issue all consider the agency of teachers in bringing an epistemology into the classroom, and in developing that epistemology.

Originality/value

The papers in this issue go beyond concepts of research-led teaching and the research-teaching nexus towards reflective pieces that develop understanding of epistemology rather than more conventional reports of classroom interventions.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Antônio André Cunha Callado and Lisa Jack

The purpose of this paper is to report the use of performance metrics among 121 Brazilian agribusiness companies, with the aim of helping accountants and academics to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report the use of performance metrics among 121 Brazilian agribusiness companies, with the aim of helping accountants and academics to understand the actual use of performance metrics in non-integrated supply chains (SCs).

Design/methodology/approach

To identify which performance metrics are used among SC partners, four independent clusters representing specific SC roles (input suppliers, farmers, distributors, and retailers) were formed. Data relating to 49 performance metrics were collected by questionnaire and analyzed statistically to isolate common measures.

Findings

It was found among suppliers, farmers, distributors, and retailers that the performance metrics for return on investment, responsiveness, and response time to clients are not being used whereas customer satisfaction obtained a usage pattern in all roles in the four groups. Hence, it appears that customer satisfaction rather than financial sustainability is the driver for discussion between SC partners.

Research limitations/implications

Although limited to a sample of firms within Brazil, the findings confirm evidence from similar SCs worldwide.

Practical implications

These findings suggest that the common metrics approach to measure SC performance may be very difficult to achieve in practice and other alternatives should be investigated by management accountants.

Social implications

A predominance of customer satisfaction metrics to the exclusion of discussions on financial performance between partners in agri-food SC has implications for the sustainability of the industry and the ability of accountants and managers to negotiate when faced with increasing input costs.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the accountants’ understanding of how performance measurement works in fragmented SCs, whereas the majority of the literature is concerned with the integrated SCs.

Details

Journal of Applied Accounting Research, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-5426

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Article
Publication date: 19 September 2016

Alan Coad, Lisa Jack and Ahmed Kholeif

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the interdisciplinary use of strong structuration theory and consider the impact of this for accounting research. The paper also…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the interdisciplinary use of strong structuration theory and consider the impact of this for accounting research. The paper also provides an overview of the contributions advanced by the other papers in this special issue of Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal (AAAJ).

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws together and identifies key issues and themes related to the rapidly evolving interdisciplinary use of strong structuration theory and considers the relevance of these issues to accounting research.

Findings

The paper highlights that there is a growing use of strong structuration theory in a number of disciplines, such as in healthcare, learning studies, management, migration studies and childcare as well as in accounting. Within the accounting discipline, whilst the interest began in management accounting and control, there are ongoing studies of the not-for-profit sector, social and environmental accounting, financial reporting standards and audit. Using strong structuration theory, researchers are more interested in the people (individually or collectively) and their analysis of their conduct and context. They are moving forwards from an overly static use of the quadripartite framework to a more dynamic approach that also includes the other important central elements of strong structuration that focus on the issue of agency in situ rather than on structure cut off from agency.

Research limitations/implications

The paper provides important insights into emerging issues and developments in strong structuration theory that have clear relevance to accounting research and practice as well as other disciplines.

Originality/value

This paper, and other contributions to this special issue of AAAJ, provide a basis and a research agenda for accounting scholars seeking to undertake empirical research using Stones’ strong structuration theory.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 29 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 19 July 2019

Karina Mari Olsen Einarsen and Lisa Jack

The purpose of this paper is to examine the measures taken by legitimate wine investment companies and enforcement agencies to counter alternative investment scams.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the measures taken by legitimate wine investment companies and enforcement agencies to counter alternative investment scams.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors interviewed wine industry and law enforcement specialists to understand the nature of wine investment fraud and the characteristics of the victims. They also drew on secondary data in the form of government agency research and media sources.

Findings

The majority of wine investment frauds are boiler room operations, using social engineering techniques to draw victims into the fraud. The authors conclude that countering wine investment fraud requires public education by government, the wine industry and the police.

Research limitations/implications

This is a small-scale study that uses interviews with experts in the industry and in law enforcement and secondary data as evidence. Despite the limitations in the number of interviews, the authors are able to comment on the social impacts of alternative investment scams and suggest a theoretical basis for future work in the field.

Practical implications

The authors make a case for regulators and investors to be part of collective action through education and public awareness campaigns to combat alternative investment fraud.

Originality/value

The authors outline how collective action theory might be extended to investigate fraud prevention measures in other financial and commodity markets.

Details

Qualitative Research in Financial Markets, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-4179

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