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Article
Publication date: 18 January 2016

William E. Shafer, Richard S. Simmons and Rita W. Y. Yip

The purpose of this paper is to document relationships between accountants’ socioeconomic beliefs and attitudes and their professional commitment and ethical decisions in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to document relationships between accountants’ socioeconomic beliefs and attitudes and their professional commitment and ethical decisions in a domain-specific context. Specifically, it investigates the relationships among Chinese tax accountants’ level of belief in the importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility, affective/normative professional commitment and ethical judgements/intentions in a case involving client pressure to commit tax fraud.

Design/methodology/approach

The study employs a survey of tax practitioners employed by public accounting firms in China. The data are analyzed using linear regression and structural equation modelling.

Findings

The stakeholder view, representing both normative and practical support for the importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility, was strongly and positively associated with professional commitment among tax practitioners. The stakeholder view also exhibited a strong negative association with intentions to engage in tax fraud. Tax accountants who possessed higher levels of professional commitment judged tax fraud as more unethical, and such ethical judgements were associated with a lower likelihood of intending to engage in fraud.

Originality/value

The associations between: first, professional accountants’ beliefs in the importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility and their level of professional commitment; and second, professional commitment and tax professionals’ ethical judgements have received little attention in the prior literature. The findings of this study suggest that the integrity of public accounting services may be influenced by relatively broad socioeconomic attitudes, and that this effect may operate partially through commitment to professional values.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 29 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1996

Richard S Simmons and TY Cheng

This research is an exploratory study into Hong Kong citizens' attitudes towards tax evasion, undertaken to provide an indication of the extent of tax evasion in the…

Abstract

This research is an exploratory study into Hong Kong citizens' attitudes towards tax evasion, undertaken to provide an indication of the extent of tax evasion in the territory. The research aims to establish whether citizens view tax evasion as an acceptable activity and to compare its acceptance with other misdemeanours such as petty theft. It also aims to establish whether a relationship exists between citizens' attitudes towards tax evasion and a) their demographic characteristics and b) their attitudes towards the tax system and tax environment. A survey was undertaken in Hong Kong, involving a representative sample of 654 citizens. The survey found that while tax evasion on all or a large part of income is considered unacceptable, small scale tax evasion (on less than 10% of income) is deemed an acceptable activity. Small scale evasion is considered more acceptable than all other misdemeanours included in the survey, including stealing a newspaper! Other findings were that citizens' belief that tax evasion is common amongst people they know is positively related to their acceptance of tax evasion, and that tax evasion is viewed as a more acceptable activity by lower than higher income groups, and by manual workers than managers, executives and professionals.

Details

Asian Review of Accounting, vol. 4 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1321-7348

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Article
Publication date: 21 June 2011

William E. Shafer and Richard S. Simmons

The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of organizational ethical culture on the ethical decisions of tax practitioners in mainland China.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of organizational ethical culture on the ethical decisions of tax practitioners in mainland China.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on a field survey of practicing public accountants.

Findings

As hypothesized, certain dimensions of ethical culture had highly significant effects on intentions to engage in aggressive tax minimization strategies. Cultures characterized by strong ethical norms and incentives for ethical behavior significantly reduced the reported likelihood of engaging in unethical behavior in a high moral intensity case. In a low moral intensity case, intentions to engage in questionable behavior were significantly higher when participants felt that top managers in their firm were unethical and rewarded unethical behavior. Relativism judgments (judgments of what is traditionally or culturally acceptable or acceptable to one's family) emerged as the strongest determinant of behavioral intentions across both cases. Participants also appeared highly sensitive to questions regarding what is traditionally or culturally acceptable in Chinese tax practice.

Originality/value

This is the first study of ethical decision making among tax practitioners in mainland China, and the findings add to a growing body of literature documenting the significant effects of organizational ethical context on public accountants' decision making processes. This has important implications for CPA firms, suggesting that proactive steps should be taken to promote supportive ethical contexts. The findings for the effects of relativism judgments raise concerns regarding the ethical decisions of Chinese tax practitioners, implying they are likely to engage in unethical behavior if they feel such behavior is common in their cultural environment.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 24 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 20 June 2008

William E. Shafer and Richard S. Simmons

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the effects of attitudes toward the perceived importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility, and Machiavellianism, a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the effects of attitudes toward the perceived importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility, and Machiavellianism, a general measure of the propensity for manipulative and deceitful behaviour, on tax professionals' willingness to participate in aggressive tax avoidance schemes of corporate clients.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on a survey of tax professionals in Hong Kong.

Findings

The paper finds that Machiavellianism affects tax advisors' expressed viewpoints toward the importance of corporate ethics and social responsibility, which affect professional judgements toward aggressive tax minimisation. As anticipated, high Machiavellians are more likely to endorse the traditional “stockholder view” of corporate responsibility (which holds that corporations have little responsibility beyond maximising their profits), and less likely to support the “stakeholder view” (which recognises corporate responsibilities to a broader range of potential stakeholders). The stockholder view (but not the stakeholder view) of corporate responsibility mediates the relationship between Machiavellianism and ethical/social responsibility judgements. Machiavellianism also had significant direct effects on ethical and social responsibility judgements.

Originality/value

The paper provides insights into the decision processes used to justify aggressive tax minimisation strategies. The findings indicate that commonly articulated views toward corporate ethics and social responsibility may be used to support unethical strategies. In particular, the finding that the stockholder view mediates the relationship between Machiavellianism and ethical/social responsibility judgements suggests that the stockholder view may be adopted to rationalise overly aggressive tax avoidance.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 21 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 20 February 2017

Abstract

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Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1947

R.S. MORTIMER

It is now forty years since there appeared H. R. Plomer's first volume Dictionary of the booksellers and printers who were at work in England, Scotland and Ireland from

Abstract

It is now forty years since there appeared H. R. Plomer's first volume Dictionary of the booksellers and printers who were at work in England, Scotland and Ireland from 1641 to 1667. This has been followed by additional Bibliographical Society publications covering similarly the years up to 1775. From the short sketches given in this series, indicating changes of imprint and type of work undertaken, scholars working with English books issued before the closing years of the eighteenth century have had great assistance in dating the undated and in determining the colour and calibre of any work before it is consulted.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Abstract

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Tales of Brexits Past and Present
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-438-5

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Book part
Publication date: 8 June 2020

Richard Majors, Llewellyn E. Simmons and Cornelius Ani

Black males often are raised in poverty, exposed to violence and toxic environments that create different levels of trauma that can cause social emotional problems which…

Abstract

Black males often are raised in poverty, exposed to violence and toxic environments that create different levels of trauma that can cause social emotional problems which lead to mental health problems. These problems along with a lack of adequate relationships with teachers can affect their schooling and attainment. No wonder, black males often suffer disproportionately from poor achievement, high suspension, exclusions, and drop-out rates. Young people who struggle in school often lack the social and emotional skills (or “soft skills”) needed to succeed academically, deal with anger, make sound choices, and handle challenging situations constructively, ethically, and manage behaviors that prevent them from being suspended/excluded from school. It does not help that teachers who are often afraid of them, and do not know how to relate to them and lack emotional literacy (EL) themselves. Unfortunately, because of these challenges schools will often place black males in special education classes.

There is a cognitive/non-cognitive divide in education. Most of the school curriculum/pedagogy focus on cognitive aspects of education/learning (e.g., memory-based education) when compared to non-cognitive aspects of learning (social and emotional skills/learning). If our young people are to realize their full potential in our schools, it is crucial we begin educating the “whole child” and increase social and emotional provisions in our schools. It is the cognitive and non-cognitive aspects of learning combined that make young people successful. We need a new educational paradigm/mind shift. After all, educating the whole child makes good sense of course, all learning has an emotional base.

While there has been a proliferation of social and emotional learning programs in schools in recent years, social and emotional learning programs that focus on black males and cultural competence are limited. Therefore, we propose a new framework for social and emotional development/learning model for black males that focus on cultural competence. Our EL/cultural competence model is called teacher empathy, which focuses on relationship black males have with their teachers and therefore focuses on both the pupil/student EL and the teachers. The aim/goal of our model/curriculum is to: improve academic performance, motivate and help both black males and teachers, regulate and manage their behaviors more effectively, and reduce suspensions, exclusions, and drop-outs.

Details

The International Handbook of Black Community Mental Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-965-6

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2002

Barrie O. Pettman and Richard Dobbins

This issue is a selected bibliography covering the subject of leadership.

Abstract

This issue is a selected bibliography covering the subject of leadership.

Details

Equal Opportunities International, vol. 21 no. 4/5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0261-0159

Keywords

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Abstract

Details

Tales of Brexits Past and Present
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-438-5

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