تحقیقات حسابداری مدیریت کیفی: بررسی اقلام قابل ارائه و ارتباط
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|10308||2012||17 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Volume 23, Issue 1, January 2012, Pages 54–70
This paper examines the positioning of qualitative research to date in the field of management accounting. It offers a critical reflection and an appraisal of its profile relative to the dominant positivist quantitative accounting research literature. In the accounting literature, management accounting research is arguably a leader in applying qualitative research methodologies. Drawing on both the management accounting and qualitative research methodology literatures, the paper critically evaluates key features of the qualitative tradition and the future trajectory of the qualitative contribution to management accounting research. The qualitative tradition emerges as contributing to the understanding and critiquing of management and accounting processes, as well as having the ability to address the concerns of practitioners and policymakers. Close researcher engagement with the field, a concern with process, embracing situational complexity, as well as critical and reflective understandings of organisational phenomena remain as hallmarks of the tradition.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Whether employed in conjunction with quantitative positivist research or as a stand-alone form of inquiry, the qualitative research tradition presents potentially unique insights and contributions to management accounting knowledge. The qualitative orientation towards understanding, critiquing and changing management accounting processes offers policymakers and practitioners particular value at the organisation-specific level. It is at this level, rather than at the generalised population-wide level, that most managers and management accountants make decisions and act. It is at this highly contextualised and situationally specific level for which they seek policy and practice insights. It is at this level that qualitative research is eminently suited to deliver. At the organisational level, as at industry-wide levels, management and management accounting practice and its processes are complex, multidimensional and indeed messy. This truism is not intended to suggest that researchers are exempt from the challenge of penetrating these dimensions and making sense of them. However despite the apparent precision and certainty of numbers that so often come to represent and dominate organisational beliefs, objectives and activities, organisational operations and their accountings are social constructs, continually metamorphosing and changing through processes of evolution and revolution. The qualitative tradition both recognises and embraces this reality of organisational life, seeking holistic understandings and explanations of managers and accountants’ experiences through multiple perspectives that offer both mutually conflicting and mutually reinforcing accounts of management and management accounting processes in the field. These potentially rich, contextualised accounts of process and practice are facilitated through theoretical innovation and variety. Qualitative researchers now work from a corpus of empirical knowledge that makes a significant contribution to our stock of knowledge about management accounting processes. Their task is not one of simply labouring descriptions that mirror the messiness and complexity of organisational life. To conclude that the organisational and accounting world is indeed a complex place tells us nothing new. Rather qualitative researchers must distill the complexities of accounting and organisational environments and processes in order to provide us with deeper processual maps and contextualised understandings of management accounting in action. Their contribution is one of identifying, tracing and understanding organisational and accounting processes both historically and in the field. In addition, qualitative studies offer deeper and better articulated conceptualisations than hitherto available, re-draw relationships between factors, and offer new theoretical frameworks to inform policy development and further research. The challenge is one of trying to make clearer more coherent sense of what is going on inside the black box of management accounting and organisational processes. In addition to the focus and potential types of knowledge that qualitative studies can produce, there is also a unique aspect to the process of undertaking qualitative research. The mantra for qualitative management accounting research is personal engagement in the field. It is the feature that distinguishes it from much of the positivist tradition. Qualitative research predominantly reflects the involved researcher tradition of direct engagement with organisations, actors and their contexts. This allows the researcher not simply to try to capture the actions and decisions of others, but as an insider to experience, at least to some degree, what it feels like to be there. This provides the soundest platform for researchers and actors to share in the process of constructing management accounting knowledge, at theory, practice and policy levels. It also offers the most promising and feasible basis for improving management accounting research engagement with the worlds of policy and practice. Furthermore it allows us to discover the new, the novel and the unexpected, even in management accounting areas of knowledge that have been well ploughed and presumed already to be well developed. For the researcher either embarking upon or embedded in the qualitative tradition, this paper offers a number of albeit controversial reflections. First, the well established qualitative accounting research tradition in management accounting now offers both stand-alone and complementary mixed methods contributions to our stock of knowledge. This represents a significant body of literature in its own right. Second, as qualitative researchers, in attempting to claim our place in the overall accounting research literature, we would do well to avoid any risk of compromising our unique and rich theoretical tradition that offers a far richer and societally more significant basis of inquiry than the monochromatic economics lens still characteristic of so much accounting research. Third, the qualitative tradition has arguably led the way in addressing both organisational and societal change that can potentially translate into significant implications for society and for accounting policy and practice. Finally qualitative management accounting researchers, while understandably developing and debating their ontological, epistemological and philosophical positions, still shoulder a responsibility to continue clearly articulating and passing on the fundamental features of their craft to future generations of researchers. There remain significant opportunities and challenges for qualitative management accounting researchers. There have been repeated calls for meta-studies that consolidate the vast array of field research published to date and which extract their significant common themes and messages for management accounting policy and practice. In addition the present institutionalised accounting research parameters must enable research that goes beyond ‘what is’ to permit engaged research into ‘what might be’: the possible and the normative. The qualitative tradition can offer some particular routes towards this present-future transition. They include the revelation of social, political and institutional conditions that can alternatively block or facilitate organisational change. Additionally qualitative research can critique and challenge conventional wisdom so that previously unimagined strategic possibilities can be opened up for the future. The qualitative tradition is well placed to translate its research into site—specific scenarios into messages with which policymakers and decision-makers can identify and readily comprehend, providing a clearer basis for future action. Finally, qualitative research can reveal the human, social world behind the numbers that requires and may trigger new forms of ‘accountings’. If we choose to move down this pathway, we can do more than rediscover what we thought we already knew. We can change more than we thought was previously possible.