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The purpose of this paper is to investigate the claim that Western accounting reforms, in particular the adoption of International Public Sector Accounting Standards…
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the claim that Western accounting reforms, in particular the adoption of International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSASs) would enhance transparency and accountability and reduce corruption in patronage-based developing countries such as Nigeria.
The paper utilises the patron/clientelism framework to examine the dynamics of Western accounting reforms in the Nigerian patronage-based society, in which the institutions of governance and regulatory structures are arguably weak. The paper utilises archival data and interviews conducted with representatives of state bodies (elected politicians and officials) and professional accounting associations.
Results from two major reforms (the sale of government-owned residential properties in Lagos and the monetisation of fringe benefits for public officials) are presented. Despite the claim of the adoption of Western accounting standards, and in particular IPSAS 17, which requires full accrual accounting and the utilisation of fair value in property valuation, historical cost accounting appeared to have been mobilised to massively corrupt the process for the benefit of politicians, other serving and retired public officials and family members.
This study contributes to the current literature by providing evidence of the relationship between patronage, corruption and accounting in wealth redistribution in the patronage-based Nigerian socio-political and economic context.
Defines two competitive ideas – competence and capability – and argues that neither deals adequately with the central issue of the present. Provides a model, to place these ideas in conceptual space – the vertical axis of which is bounded by the extremes of narrow and broad focus, and the horizontal axis by the past and the future. Suggests that competence is on an outer edge, being narrowly focused on the performance of pre‐defined tasks, and based on the past in that it can be demonstrated in the present only if it has already been developed. Capability is on the opposite outer edge, being broadly focused on the performance of non‐defined tasks, and cannot be demonstrated in the present, because it exists as potential/future possibility or capacity. To illuminate the centre, suggests a tentative solution called “capatence” – the necessary symbiosis between competence and capability that will allow for flexibility of focus and a grounding in the present.
Reports the findings of a qualitative piece of research that was undertaken with professionals in the health field. There are numerous professionals working in the…
Reports the findings of a qualitative piece of research that was undertaken with professionals in the health field. There are numerous professionals working in the health/social services fields. Those who were the respondents in the research included chiropodists, nurses, doctors, psychologists and art psychotherapists. The sample was taken mainly from Essex, with input from a wider environment which included Newcastle, Southend, Manchester and Burnley. The researchers gave a brief scenario prior to asking open‐ended, qualitative questions about professionals' perceptions of: the physical appearance of managers; the roles of managers in the NHS. The comments made by the respondents indicate a disturbing degree of hostility towards and misapprehension about managers in the reformed NHS.
The immediate, common sense answer to the question, “Who is the NHSfor?” would obviously be, “The patients who use it”. This may well be thefundamental purpose of the NHS…
The immediate, common sense answer to the question, “Who is the NHS for?” would obviously be, “The patients who use it”. This may well be the fundamental purpose of the NHS, yet it would appear that differing views of how this is to be achieved contribute to a misreading between stakeholders of each others′ remit. The different positions taken by the two most important NHS stakeholders, the professional clinicians and the administrative managers, affect their definitions of, and therefore their attitudes to their own contribution to the purpose of the NHS. Suggests that before priorities in health care can be considered and discussed, let alone be set, consensual agreement needs to be reached concerning the views of professional clinicians and managers of ways of achieving their vision of who the NHS is for.
All too often discussion of Capability proceeds as if it is clear what ‘Capability’ is: and that all that is required is the ascertaining of means for developing it. This…
All too often discussion of Capability proceeds as if it is clear what ‘Capability’ is: and that all that is required is the ascertaining of means for developing it. This paper seeks to explore the meanings of Capability. It provides two broad meanings, and discusses the paradoxes inherent in the application of these to the real world of management and business. On the one hand, Capability is defined as Potential, what the individual could achieve. Potential is an endowment, which is realised by the acquisition of skills and knowledge, i.e. the acquisition of Content. On the other hand, Capability is defined as Content: what the individual can (or has learned to) do. This Content has been acquired by, or input into, the individual, who then has the Potential to develop further. So there are different routes to Capability, depending on the definition of Capability one chooses. All of this impinges on the development of Capability. This leads us on to a consideration of whether the ‘Development of Capability’ is a meaningful concept.
The paper analyses the concept of ‘user needs’, which has been widely adopted by official bodies as the basis of a conceptual framework for financial reporting, including…
The paper analyses the concept of ‘user needs’, which has been widely adopted by official bodies as the basis of a conceptual framework for financial reporting, including the ASB in the UK, following the lead of the FASB in the US. The user needs approach is essentially deductive: if users of the financial statements are identified, together with the decisions such users want to make with the information such statements contain, then the required information can be specified in the appropriate form. The paper attempts to follow this logic, to test its viability, making reference to the literature and the conceptual framework statements of FASB and the ASB. The paper concludes that the approach throws up such serious problems that no clear conclusions can be drawn from it. FASB and the ASB do not explicitly face these problems, and effectively abandon the user needs criterion. User needs can only serve a rhetorical function within conceptual framework documents.
Recounts how medieval English Jewry began when Jews were invited to immigrate by William I and ended with their expulsion by Edward I in 1290. The Jewish community was…
Recounts how medieval English Jewry began when Jews were invited to immigrate by William I and ended with their expulsion by Edward I in 1290. The Jewish community was important and for most of its existence it was prosperous, owing to its particular social function – being the bankers, moneylenders and financiers of the time. Concentrates on a relatively little known aspect of the medieval Jewish community: the role played by its women. Jewish women played a significant part in business, not just as the wives or widows of businessmen, but as entrepreneurs on their own account. This was in sharp contrast to the position of women in wider English society. Using contemporary documents, the article examines the scale and nature of the business activities of Jewish women in medieval England, sketches the activities of some of these female entrepreneurs, and attempts to investigate the factors which enabled them to play such a prominent role.
The paper explores the literature concerning outcome measures used in health services. The need to measure outcomes subsequent to encounters with health services has been…
The paper explores the literature concerning outcome measures used in health services. The need to measure outcomes subsequent to encounters with health services has been identified and occurs as a result of the current “value for money” approaches being used within the NHS. Provider units are required to establish the effects which interventions have had on the health of each individual using their services, despite the fact that definitions of health outcomes used by both professionals and managers are problematic. It is suggested here, however, that outcome measures which answer all requirements will remain elusive, and their effectiveness will vary according to the circumstances of their generation and use. Moreover, the very use of outcome measures as management tools can lead to a subversion of the meaning which led to their selection in the first place. Managing by (outcome measure) numbers is not a realistic way forward.
This paper explores the nature of audit automation as control within audit firms. The themes of the paper are control over the work process and audit staff, deskilling and…
This paper explores the nature of audit automation as control within audit firms. The themes of the paper are control over the work process and audit staff, deskilling and resistance, and competition, which are analysed using the theoretical framework provided by Coombs et al., who applied Giddens’ structuration theory to research the impact of information technology in organizations. Building on a previous survey study we interviewed audit staff at all levels in two Big 5 audit firms. The results show that audit automation cannot be viewed simply as a technology for improving the quality and/or productivity of the audit process. It also has value as a symbol of the firm’s market competitiveness and hence helps to promote the firm both to clients and internally. In addition, the research shows that audit automation offers considerable opportunities for greater managerial surveillance and control, but at the same time it facilitates a less hierarchical and more informal organisational structure.