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Book part

Ericka Costa, Lee D. Parker and Michele Andreaus

Within the accounting discipline and its literature, attention to the role of social and non-profit organizations has been growing, particularly with respect to issues of…

Abstract

Within the accounting discipline and its literature, attention to the role of social and non-profit organizations has been growing, particularly with respect to issues of accountability and social accounting. In response, the aim of this introductory article is to present the background for the book by highlighting (i) the relevance and rise of the non-profit sector worldwide, (ii) the limitations of the conventional accounting framework when applied/transposed to NPOs and (iii) the ‘social accounting project’ for NPOs. The article presents analysis and critique based on a literature review of the accountability framework for NPOs. After presenting key worldwide statistics regarding the growing non-profit sector, the article points out the skepticism regarding the adoption of traditional accounting principles and frameworks for NPOs. The article offers both an examination of how to improve the accounting system for NPOs and a discussion of the benefits emerging from the social and environmental accounting and reporting models. ‘The social accounting project’ for NPOs is presented as a pathway towards these innovative practices increasing organizational transparency. This article and the book overall provide new contributions to the research literature, fostering synergies among financial accounting and social accounting scholars engaging with the NPO subject area. Moreover it brings together studies from a range of disciplines, such as financial accounting, social accounting, economics, management, and third-sector studies. This cross-disciplinary approach offers a major contribution to our developing knowledge in this field.

Details

Accountability and Social Accounting for Social and Non-Profit Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-004-9

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Book part

Michael K. Shaub

This chapter examines the relationship between four variables indicating ethical disposition – ethical sensitivity, ethical reasoning, concern for others, and egocentrism

Abstract

This chapter examines the relationship between four variables indicating ethical disposition – ethical sensitivity, ethical reasoning, concern for others, and egocentrism – and trait professional skepticism (PS) (Hurtt, 2010) among 119 first-year auditors. While there has been research addressing the link between ethical dispositional factors and state PS in auditors (e.g., Shaub & Lawrence, 1996), there is a lack of research into the link between ethical dispositional factors and trait PS (Hurtt, 2010). The results indicate that trait PS is higher in first-year auditors with higher levels of ethical reasoning, concern for others, and egocentrism. More ethically sensitive auditors do not demonstrate higher levels of trait PS, however. The results provide evidence that auditors’ ethical dispositions influence their ability to have the mindset necessary to carry out the investor protection role that requires adequate PS.

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Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-669-8

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Article

Justina Gineikiene, Justina Kiudyte and Mindaugas Degutis

The purpose of this paper is to explore how health consciousness and skepticism toward health claims are related to perceived healthiness and willingness to buy functional…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore how health consciousness and skepticism toward health claims are related to perceived healthiness and willingness to buy functional food (i.e. functional yogurt) compared to conventional and organic (bio) food.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of 295 consumers was conducted in Lithuania. Data were analyzed using structural equation modeling.

Findings

Research findings indicate that health conscious consumers tend to discount messages about the health value of functional food and show preferences for organic food. In contrast, skepticism toward health claims has a higher negative homogenous impact on the perceived healthiness of functional, organic and conventional products compared to health consciousness. On the other hand, skepticism toward health claims does not directly reduce consumers’ willingness to buy functional, organic and conventional products.

Research limitations/implications

Testing other settings, product categories, additional constructs and understanding underlying processes using an experimental design may help to gain more insights into how health conscious and skeptical consumers make food choices.

Practical implications

An examination of health consciousness and skepticism toward health claims can provide at least a partial explanation as to why many functional food products fail to gain consumer confidence.

Originality/value

Based on the reactance theory, the study sheds some light on the understanding of how different psychosocial factors are related to consumer attitudes toward functional, organic and conventional food.

Details

Baltic Journal of Management, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5265

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Article

Helen Tregidga

The purpose of this paper is to empirically investigate the act of shadow reporting by a social movement organisation as a form of shadow accounting within a sustained…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to empirically investigate the act of shadow reporting by a social movement organisation as a form of shadow accounting within a sustained campaign against a target corporation. Situated within a consideration of power relations, the rationales underlying the production of the shadow report, and the shadow reports perceived value and limits as a shadow accounting mechanism, are investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

A Foucauldian approach to power/knowledge and truth is drawn upon in the analysis of a single case study. Alongside a consideration of the shadow report itself, interviews with both the preparers of the report and senior management of the corporation targeted comprise the main data.

Findings

The paper provides an empirical investigation into shadow reporting as a form of shadow accounting. While a range of insights are garnered into the preparation, dissemination and impact of the shadow report, key findings relate to a consideration of power relations. The perceived “truth” status of corporate accounts compared to accounts prepared by shadow accountants is problematised through a consideration of technologies of power and power/knowledge formations. Power relations are subsequently recognised as fundamental to the emancipatory potential of shadow reporting.

Research limitations/implications

Results from a single case study are presented. Furthermore, given the production of the shadow report occurred several years prior to the collection of data, participants were asked to reflect on past events. Findings are therefore based on those reflections.

Originality/value

While previous studies have considered the preparation of shadow reports and their transformative potential, this study is, the author believes, the first to empirically analyse the preparation, dissemination and perceived impacts of shadow reporting from the perspectives of both the shadow report producers and the target corporation.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article

Sivakumar Velayutham

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the arguments that the assumptions underlying conventional accounting are incompatible with Islamic values, hence the need for new…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the arguments that the assumptions underlying conventional accounting are incompatible with Islamic values, hence the need for new accounting objectives and assumptions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper adopts an analytic approach based on a combination of archival and bibliographic data sources.

Findings

It is shown that this belief of incompatibility can be traced to misconceptions about the assumptions underlying “conventional accounting”. It is then argued that the neglect of Islamic accounting in Islamic countries could be attributed to Islamic accounting not meeting the needs of users rather than acculturation or economic dependency.

Research limitations/implications

The study relies solely on the literature and highlights important issues in the area but does not provide any empirical evidence. The implications are significant for the future development of Islamic accounting and the economies of Islamic countries. The objective of accounting is to provide useful information for economic decision-making and the adoption of wrong assumptions would limit the usefulness of accounting information.

Originality/value

Few scholars have questioned the assumptions underlying Islamic accounting, and this debate is important for the continued development of Islamic accounting. The paper also attempts to contribute to the debate on the poor adoption of Islamic accounting.

Details

Journal of Islamic Accounting and Business Research, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0817

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Article

Janice E. Lawrence, CPA PhD, Michael K. Shaub and CPA PhD

Auditors' ethical orientation and reasoning influence their professional and ethical decisions, thus impacting users of financial statements. This study examines gender…

Abstract

Auditors' ethical orientation and reasoning influence their professional and ethical decisions, thus impacting users of financial statements. This study examines gender and career level influences on ethical orientation and reasoning and documents systematic differences across the accounting firm. Seniors were most likely to adopt the ethical views of relativism and situation ethics. Male managers and partners were conventional ethical reasoners who adopted society's view of ethical problems, with partners scoring highest on Stage 6 principled reasoning. Female managers were largely Stage 5 principled reasoners. The results emphasize the importance of developing richer descriptions of auditors' ethics before recommending changes in the profession.

Details

Managerial Finance, vol. 23 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4358

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Article

Engy E. Abdelhak, Ahmed A. Elamer, Aws AlHares and Craig McLaughlin

The purpose of this study is to investigate Egyptian auditors’ ethical reasoning, to understand whether auditors’ ethical reasoning is influenced by audit firm size and/or…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate Egyptian auditors’ ethical reasoning, to understand whether auditors’ ethical reasoning is influenced by audit firm size and/or auditor’s position.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws on 178 questionnaires that include six different ethical scenarios. This paper also uses the accounting ethical dilemma instrument that is developed by Thorne (2000) to measure the ethical reasoning of Egyptian auditors.

Findings

The findings are threefold. First, this study finds that the general level of deliberative ethical reasoning of auditors working in the Central Auditing Organization (CAO) and small firms are categorized in the post-conventional level, while auditors working in big and medium firms are categorized in conventional level. Second, the result suggests that there is a negative relationship between ethical reasoning and audit firm size in Egypt. Finally, the results show that ethical reasoning levels decrease when the position of auditors increase except for auditors working in CAO.

Originality/value

This study adds to the scarce literature in developing countries that measure auditors’ ethical reasoning. The findings suggest that auditors’ ethical reasoning depends on auditor’s firm size and the position the auditor holds within the firm. These findings will aid policymakers and regulators, especially in developing countries, to avoid any potential risk regarding professional misconduct and in evaluating the adequacy of the current code of ethics.

Details

International Journal of Ethics and Systems, vol. 35 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9369

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Book part

Kala Saravanamuthu

Scientists are constructing knowledge about global warming by adapting evidence-based disciplines to reflect the Precautionary Principle. It is equally important to…

Abstract

Scientists are constructing knowledge about global warming by adapting evidence-based disciplines to reflect the Precautionary Principle. It is equally important to communicate the complexities and uncertainties underpinning global warming because inappropriate vehicles for giving accounts could result in defensive decisions that perpetuate the business-as-usual mindset: the method of communication affects how the risk associated with global warming is socialised. Appropriately constructed accounts should facilitate reflective communicative action. Here Beck's theorisation of risk society, Luhmann's sociological theory of risk and Gandhi's vehicle of communicative action (or satyagraha) are used to construct a risk-based accountability mechanism, whilst providing insight into Schumacher's concept of total accountability. These accountability constructs will be illustrated through the lived experiences of South Australian citrus horticulturists in the context of a richly layered narrative of competing discourses about global warming. The reiterative process of theory informing practice is used to construct a couple of dialogical vehicles of accountability.

Details

Extending Schumacher's Concept of Total Accounting and Accountability into the 21st Century
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-301-9

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Article

Steven Dellaportas

This paper hypothesizes that a system of accounting underpinned by attributions of harm has the capacity, more than conventional accounting, to elicit empathic concern…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper hypothesizes that a system of accounting underpinned by attributions of harm has the capacity, more than conventional accounting, to elicit empathic concern among managers, by becoming the mediating link between organisational responsibility and concern for the “other”.

Design/methodology/approach

The literature-inspired reflections presented in this paper stem from the theoretical perspective of care-ethics supported by the notions of empathy and proximity to highlight how the propensity to empathise is mediated by attributions of harm and responsibility.

Findings

The proposed “new” accounting, coined “connected accounting” is proposed because of its potential to make visible the neglected and marginalised segments of society that presently lie hidden in conventional accounting. Accounting for the effects of organisational practice on people and society is expected to strengthen the care-ethic relationship between key actors – managers, accountants and stakeholders.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is limited by the assumptions that underpin the conceptualised notion of “Connected Accounting”.

Originality/value

This essay introduces to the accounting ethics literature the role of emotion and empathic care in accounting, including sociological aspects of accounting reflecting the ongoing quest for understanding the processes and consequences of accounting as a social practice.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 32 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article

Timothy J. Fogarty and John T. Rigsby

Prior to the sudden collapse of large companies following the turn of the century and the implication that the auditing of these enterprises had failed, the large public…

Abstract

Purpose

Prior to the sudden collapse of large companies following the turn of the century and the implication that the auditing of these enterprises had failed, the large public accounting firms sought to re‐engineer the audit. A comprehension attempt to convert that which had been designed as a social good into one more aligned with a commercial logic was halted by the legislative response to this departure from classic professionalism. Recent developments suggest that change in this direction is regrouping. The purpose of this paper is to provide a reflective analysis of the thoughts of the authors on the early development of the new audit approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Most of the information in the piece was garnered from conversations with public accounting partners during the era in question. Logical argumentation derived from the academic and theoretical literature is the primary method.

Findings

Attributes of the firms' strategies during this period are outlined. Features of the new audit are developed, especially as they vary from the traditional audit. These techniques and approaches are analyzed in terms of their ability to serve the public interest. This paper argues that motivating factors of the new audit will continue to be a force even in the more hostile regulatory environment of today.

Practical implications

An appreciation of the findings of the study is useful in maintaining a level of skepticism about changes to the audit that are advocated by audit firms. Users of audit services, regulators, and legislators would benefit from an appreciation of the recent past. The motivating factors underlying these changes to audit environment continue to operate over time as the social purposes of the audit are less likely to be converted by the firms to ones that can be commercially exploited.

Originality/value

The study contributes insights into the origins of the new business audit approach and related strengths and limitations. These factors should be considered as the approach is developed and moves forward into the future in order for the audit approach to be effective in performing its social functions.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

Keywords

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