Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal Table of Contents for Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal. List of articles from the current issue, including Just Accepted (EarlyCite)
- Epistolizing accountability: a critical exploration of INGO annual report leaders' letterspor Helen Abnett el junio 9, 2023 a las 12:00 am
This paper explores how INGOs communicate their activities and achievements. In doing so, the study seeks to increase our understanding of INGOs' accountability practices. This paper uses thematic analysis to analyse 90 ‘leaders’ letters' (the letters that many charities include at the beginning of their Annual Reports and Accounts), published by 39 INGOs between 2015 and 2018. This paper argues that within the Annual Report letters under consideration, INGOs' accountability practices focus on quantitative, process-driven, output reporting. In doing so, it is the actions and agency of INGOs that are primarily emphasised. INGO constituents are largely excluded from representation. Donors are presented only as contributors of financial capital. Drawing on field theory, the paper argues that this representational practice means INGO constituents are almost irrelevant to INGOs' representational and accountability communication practices. This paper is indebted to previous important work and, building on such scholarship, seeks to contribute to the ongoing conversation about INGO accountability. While reinforcing some prior knowledge, the findings here also differ in the understanding of how donors are portrayed. The paper extends previous analyses by using field theory to show that the INGO field as considered here is a space in which representations of accountability are based on organisational and transactional factors, and does not value the humanity of INGOs' constituents. This connects to operations of power, between donors, INGOs, and constituents, and reinforces inequitable power within the development system.
- Breaking boundaries and creating inclusion-based organization through critical performativity and dialogical accountability: the case of FC United Manchesterpor Daniel Torchia el junio 5, 2023 a las 12:00 am
The purpose of this paper is to extend research on boundary making and breaking through alternative football clubs. These entities have borne out of the disappointment caused by the neoliberal turn of the football industry, which excluded traditional fans from being active actors and therefore call for study and generalization of specific forms of alternative accountability. The study looks at emerging trends in the accounting and sport literature by drawing on two concepts that emerged in critical scholarship: critical performativity and critical dialogical accountability, with the aim of better understanding how these elements are developed and shaped within an alternative form of football organization. The focus on Football Club United of Manchester drives the ethnographic approach with data collected via participant observation, field-notes, documental analysis and semi-structured interviews. The research shows that the pillars of the club's ethos, pushing its critical performative interventions toward setting new boundaries, are democratic governance and accountability, favoring participation and inclusion, and strictly linked to this, a responsibility to local communities. However, the study also highlights the difficulties of maintaining these boundaries when core values are threatened by degeneration. The study makes a novel contribution to the field of accounting and sport, showing how an alternative football club adopts inclusive accountability systems that go beyond mainstream neoliberal practices. Such an inclusive approach can stimulate critical performativity, moving away from means-end rationality.
- Contextualised accountant stereotypes: understanding their social construction and reconstruction in Chinese societypor Yuheng Wang el mayo 30, 2023 a las 12:00 am
This study seeks to understand how accountant stereotypes have been constructed and reconstructed at the macro-national and the structural level in Chinese society. This qualitative investigation into China's social construction of accountant stereotypes employs Becker's (1963) labelling theory. Viewing stereotyping as a socially constructed practice, this study draws on a post-positivistic, reflexive epistemology in conducting 28 semi-structured interviews with accountants and related actors. Chinese accountant stereotypes are constructed and reconstructed according to the rules created and enforced in different cultural-political periods. The accountant stereotypes constructed during the ancient Confucian period (500 BC – 1948) were replaced during 1949 and 2012 when the political focus shifted towards propagating socialism and later promoting economic growth. They also show how Confucian stereotypes of accountants resurfaced in 2013 but were reconstructed by the central government's cultural confidence policy of propagating Confucianism. Empirically, prior literature has focused on what the accountant stereotype is and how accountants respond to such stereotypes, but it has neglected the ways in which these accountant stereotypes are politically and culturally constructed, diffused and legitimated. This paper fills in the gap by understanding the social practice of accountant stereotyping in a previously unexplored political-cultural context, namely Chinese society. In theoretical terms, by offering the first use of Becker's (1963) labelling theory in the accounting literature, it furthermore enhances our understanding of how accountants' identities and social standing are shaped by social rules.
- Technological innovation and the co-production of accounting services in small accounting firmspor Grégory Jemine el mayo 24, 2023 a las 12:00 am
Increasingly, emerging information technologies such as shared software and continuous accounting are offering alternative ways to perform accounting tasks in a supposedly more efficient fashion. Yet, few studies have investigated how they affect the provision of accounting services, especially in the context of small accounting firms, which provide legal and tax services to entrepreneurs and businesses. Drawing on the service perspective, the paper critically examines how technological innovation challenges and reconfigures the co-production of accounting services in these firms. The paper answers calls issued in prior studies to conduct empirical research on emerging information technologies for accountants. It focuses on the specific context of small accounting firms and draws on interviews with small accounting firms' managers (n = 20). The study emphasizes five significant challenges that accounting firm managers face when using information technologies to support the provision of their services (ensuring reliability, factoring in their heterogeneous client base, repricing, training clients to use new technologies and promoting advisory services). Information technologies are shown to have a structuring role in the co-production of accounting services, as they lead to reconfigurations of the relationships between accountants and their clients. A range of four configurations is developed to highlight accountants' strategies to maintain collaborative relationships with their clients while integrating new technologies into their work practices. By conceptualizing accounting services as a co-production process, the paper offers new insights into the implications of emerging information technologies for small accounting firms.
- Content moderation on social media: constructing accountability in the digital spacepor Conor Clune el mayo 15, 2023 a las 12:00 am
The paper examines the content moderation practices and related public disclosures of the World's most popular social media organizations (SMOs). It seeks to understand how content moderation operates as a process of accountability to shape and inform how users (inter)act on social media and how SMOs account for these practices. Content analysis of the content moderation practices for selected SMOs was conducted using a range of publicly available data. Drawing on seminal accountability studies and the concepts of hierarchical and holistic accountability, the authors investigate the design and appearance of the systems of accountability that seek to guide how users create and share content on social media. The paper unpacks the four-stage process of content moderation enacted by the World's largest SMOs. The findings suggest that while social media accountability may allow SMOs to control the content shared on their platforms, it may struggle to condition user behavior. This argument is built around the limitations the authors found in the way performance expectations are communicated to users, the nature of the dialogue that manifests between SMOs and users who are “held to account”, and the metrics drawn upon to determine the effectiveness of SMOs content moderation activities. This is the first paper to examine the content moderation practices of the World's largest SMOs. Doing so extends understanding of the forms of accountability that function in the digital space. Crucial future research opportunities are highlighted to provoke and guide debate in this research area of escalating importance.