پژوهش حسابداری : تجزیه و تحلیل نظریه های بررسی شده در پایان نامه های دکترا و کاربرد آنها در نظریه سیستم
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|10339||2007||18 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Accounting Forum, Volume 31, Issue 3, September 2007, Pages 305–322
This study examined theories used in accounting doctoral dissertations and found that dissertations in this discipline test theories drawn from economics, finance, psychology, and sociology, with 53% from economics and finance and 27% from psychology. Further, a primary conclusion of this paper is that doctoral research in accounting explores subsets of organizational activity consistent with the premises of Systems Theory.
In a comprehensive study of accounting theory, the Committee on concepts and standards for external financial reports concluded that the accounting profession does not have a generally accepted base theory (AAA, 1977). Nevertheless, accounting theorists have focused on the ability of accountants to provide information useful for decision purposes (Carnegie & Napier, 1996) and information usefulness was incorporated into the FASB's (1978)Statement of Financial Accounting Concepts No. 1 as a primary function of the financial accounting discipline. Similarly, recent editions of college accounting textbooks emphasize the importance of accounting information for the successful conduct of a ‘value adding’ transformation process (Edmonds, Edmonds, & Tsay, 2003; Ingram, Albright, & Baldwin, 2004; Reimers, 2003). The use of the transformation process as a basis for structuring textbooks highlights accounting information's contribution to organizational growth and prosperity. Textbooks, however, fail to identify Systems Theory (ST) as the framework from which the model is drawn. Furthermore, Miller (1972) points out that an organization, regardless of its social function, is a collection of specialized subsystems that must be effectively coordinated in order to grow and prosper. Coordination requires decision-useful information that promotes organizational learning. Senge (1990) posits that an organization does not start as a superior performer. Rather, it learns to achieve through ‘systems thinking’. Thus, by omitting ST from accounting textbooks, and discussions of accounting theory, educators overlook not only an inter-disciplinary educational opportunity, but also an opportunity to show how subsystem accomplishment and coordination is important to organizational sustainability. Morgan and Willmott (1993) lament the invisibility of accounting in organizational management textbooks, and point out that students in other business disciplines, such as leadership, marketing, and human resources are not well grounded in accounting's contribution to organizational well-being. They encourage authors in these disciplines to incorporate a discussion of the social value of accounting. Interestingly, Morgan and Willmott fail to call for accounting textbooks to do the same in regards to other disciplines. They conclude with a call for increased research that demonstrates the relationships between organizational subsystems that remains unanswered. Similarly, Morgan and Smircich (1980) and Williams (2003) point out that most accounting research, grounded in positivist economic science, has a subsystem orientation. Troubled by the dominance of positivist economic research that imposes a rigid framework on organic, dynamic, multi-dimensional organizations (systems), they encourage a discourse on how accounting benefits both organizations and society. The purpose of this study is three-fold: first, to explore accounting theory from a systems perspective; second, to identify theories employed in accounting research; and third, to stimulate the discourses of accounting and Systems Theory. To accomplish these aims, we examine the accounting profession's search for a theoretical framework; through a review of classical literature and by analyzing doctoral dissertations to identify the theories tested. In addition, we appraise ST literature and the theories motivating doctoral dissertations from a ST perspective to assess their relationship to this theoretical framework. It was found that accounting dissertations investigate theories borrowed from the disciplines of economics, finance, psychology, and sociology. The most commonly used theories are the efficient market hypothesis, the capital asset pricing model, and the discounted cash flow valuation model. When considered from an organizational perspective, accounting research is reductive in scope because each study investigates a specific subset of accounting activity. However, all of the theories used in accounting dissertations relate to an aspect of subsystem operation and, therefore, dissertation research was in harmony with the tenets of ST.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This research represents a seminal effort to identify theories used in accounting dissertations and to relate them to ST. It is found that theories used in accounting research are borrowed from finance, economics, psychology, and sociology, and such research attempts to explain why, or how, accounting information is important to a particular aspect of an organization's transformation process. This finding is consistent with a study of management accounting research that concludes that a unified management accounting base theory has not been identified, and that this branch of accounting draws from the economic, psychology, and sociology disciplines for theoretical guidance in the conduct of empirical research (Shields, 1997). The FASB's general framework highlights decision-useful information as the primary objective of the accounting discipline. Likewise, information is a critical component of ST. Specifically the requirement that open systems constantly monitor changing internal and external environments in ways that promote effective and efficient value added activity through adaptation that maintains harmony with the operating environment. Further, the idea of sustainability relates to the entropy concept in ST, as information, with accounting being one significant information source, is important to decision making that negates the tendency of systems to deteriorate over time. Because systems are complex and multi-dimensional, accounting research is not conducted on an entire system. Rather, a subsystem approach is employed because it simplifies data gathering and hypothesis testing. The ability to relate subsystem research to other intra-system components would be useful to organizational decision makers since, consistent with system thinking (Duncan, 1972 and Miller, 1972), the decider component of a system (senior management) needs to know how subsystem effort contributes to overall system sustainability. However, any attempt at generalizing to the broader system should be contextual, rather than positivism causal, because subsystem interactions are dynamic and ever changing (Morgan & Smircich, 1980). Indeed, ST seems capable of serving as a coalescent for subsystem research if, as suggested by Ulrich (1983), such research is evaluated using a critical approach that allows for consideration of alternative beliefs and assumptions. The literature review indicates that both accounting literature and accounting textbooks are devoid of explicit ST discourse. Thus, accounting educators have an opportunity to identify ST as the source of the transformation process set forth in accounting textbooks, and to utilize this rich paradigm as a way of explaining why accounting is an important mechanism for supplying organizational decision makers with information that is both relevant and reliable. ST also provides accounting educators with a useful way to incorporate an interdisciplinary aspect to classroom learning by highlighting the value of accounting information to other organizational disciplines, such as marketing, management, operations, and finance. Doing so will promote discourse on how accounting information contributes to firm coordination, welfare, and sustainability as called for by Morgan and Willmott (1993). Finally, not all of the 2001 accounting dissertations clearly identify the base theory under investigation. Since a base theory is a critical component of the scientific method, those involved on dissertation committees will improve the quality of a research effort by requiring a clearly written base theory that supports the development of research questions and hypotheses. As is the case with research studies, this research is not without limitations. First, there is much ST literature that we could not incorporate in our paper. The omission of worthy and insightful viewpoints was necessary to keep the paper to a manageable length. Second, we employed accounting dissertations from 2001 to identify theories used in research efforts. Future research might use articles from referred journals for this purpose. Third, this paper focused on accounting research and presented short summaries of theories used as a basis for research. Future efforts might more rigorously explore sub-theories in a way that provides opportunity for both the researcher and the proponents of different theories a voice in the ST debate.