انطباق نگاشت مالیات : مجموعه، عمل و شیوه های توزیع : یک راه جدید برای انجام تحقیقات مالیاتی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|5255||2013||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Available online 17 March 2013
Tax compliance denotes the act of reporting and paying taxes in accordance with the tax laws. Current social science scholarship on tax compliance can almost entirely be divided into behavioural psychology analyses and critical tax studies. This article, which presents two cases of how tax compliance is constructed, challenges the explanatory reaches of today's social science approaches, arguing that an alternative approach to understanding tax compliance is worthwhile exploring. This other choice of approach, inspired by actor–network theory (ANT), adopts a more practice-oriented focus that studies tax compliance where it takes place as well as what it is made of. Consequently, this article argues that tax compliance is a socio-material assemblage and that complying is a distributed action. The article concludes by highlighting how an ANT approach contributes to the further theoretical development of social science studies of taxation.
Tax compliance denotes the practices of reporting income and paying taxes to a tax administration. Such tax compliance practices may take place in businesses as bookkeepers file invoices and report taxes to the tax administration, as businesses receive unannounced inspections from tax inspectors, or as accountants advise business owners on their fiscal affairs and accountability. All of these diverse activities shape how well a business reports income and pays taxes and thereby indicate the degree of tax compliance that a business has. The practitioners and academics who have traditionally been most interested in tax compliance e.g. tax inspectors, accountants and legal scholars typically define tax compliance, “as reporting all income and paying all taxes in accordance with the applicable laws, regulations, and court decisions” (Alm, 1991: 577). This definition refers to the technicalities of reporting and paying taxes. Although these accounting and legal scholars are the main interested party when talking about tax compliance, the last two decades have also seen social scientists emerge as analysts in this field. Current social science scholarship on tax compliance can almost entirely be divided into two bodies of literature: one by behavioural psychologists focused on giving statistical, evidence-based answers as to which factors influence tax compliance behaviour (e.g. Cialdini, 1989, Kirchler, 2007, Murphy, 2008, Murphy et al., 2009, Torgler, 2008 and Wenzel, 2007) and critical tax studies, which provide qualitative and interpretative analyses of how the state disciplines taxpayers (e.g. Gracia and Oats, 2012, Lamb, 2001, Likhovski, 2007, Preston, 1989 and Tuck, 2010). Although both bodies of literature focus on providing knowledge about how the will to comply is constructed, the approaches map onto two distinct camps within social science, the former tending to have a managerial focus in providing recommendations to the regulating tax bodies relying on an evidence-based approach, the latter having a critical focus relying on interpretation and constructivism ( Grey, 2005, McKerchar, 2008 and McKerchar, 2010). This article shows that an alternative social science approach to understanding tax compliance is worthwhile exploring. Inspired by actor–network theory (Callon, 1986, Callon, 2008, Latour, 1987, Latour, 2005, Law, 1994 and Law and Hassard, 1999), this approach, compared to the existing approaches that focus broadly on how the will to comply is constructed, focuses on how the means to comply are put together. The approach adopts a more practice-oriented focus, studying tax compliance where it takes place as well as what it is made of. After presenting the existing approaches to understanding tax compliance in Section 2, the article introduces actor–network theory (ANT) as an alternative analytical strategy in Section 3. To exemplify the insights that this approach contributes, Section 4 presents two ethnographic cases, or vignettes, that illustrate how tax compliance is constructed in a carpentry business and in a kitchen remodelling company. The analysis of these cases in Section 5 shows that various heterogeneous entities constitute compliance and non-compliance in the two vignettes and that the act of complying (or not complying) would not be possible was it not for its distribution among entities that collectively assist the individuals in their endeavours. The penultimate section of this article highlights how the ANT approach contributes to further theoretical development of social studies of taxation. A previous special issue of Critical Perspectives on Accounting called “Critical Perspective on Taxation” (Boden et al., 2010) and Taxation: A Fieldwork Research Handbook (Oats, 2012) call for more theoretical development and creativity in tax research. Hence the aim of this article is to respond to this call and engage in the debate concerning how qualitative and interpretative social science can improve our knowledge of taxation.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This article demonstrates that it is worthwhile exploring an alternative way of studying tax compliance. The article has described two existing approaches to studying tax compliance, one represented by behavioural psychologists, who focus on the relationships between tax compliance and various behavioural factors, and the other represented by critical tax researchers, who show how taxpayers are disciplined by the state/tax administration to become compliant. As extensive as these views on tax compliance are, they do not cover every analytical option. Inspired by ANT this article presents an alternative approach to studying tax compliance that sees tax compliance as a socio-material assemblage, arguing that “to comply” is a distributed action. In the article two ethnographic vignettes or cases are presented, one involving the compliance of a bookkeeper in a carpentry business and the other a non-compliant kitchen fitter. These vignettes illustrate what an ANT-inspired approach can contribute to the field. Applying an ANT approach shows that tax compliance in the carpentry business is an effect of the enrolment and coordination of various human and non-human actors, while non-compliance in the failed kitchen remodelling company can be understood as a distributed action encompassing elements such as the discourse on the financial crisis, the procedures for receiving social benefits, and the technicalities in issuing invoices without reporting the VAT. These elements collectively assist in turning the business owner into a fraudster. For a long time the tax field has been dominated by rational choice, black letter and quantitative approaches (Boden et al., 2010 and Oats, 2012). In recent years, however, the tax field has witnessed an increase in theoretical approaches as several disciplines engage in providing knowledge on various aspects of taxation. Particularly, qualitative and interpretative approaches have begun to mark themselves as providers of knowledge in the field. The implications of the analysis in this article should to be seen in light of these general changes in the field. Arguing that tax compliance is a socio-material assemblage and that compliance is a distributed action offers a new understanding of tax compliance. This mapping of tax compliance insists on a stubborn realist attitude and has the advantage that it brings the reader closer to what happens in the business office and what composes tax compliance in a given time and space. This is different from the current social science mappings of tax compliance because they tend to draw the reader away from the concrete practices of tax compliance. They perceive tax compliance either as something beyond what happens in the business office by focussing on the state's power to discipline the taxpayers or by focusing on the individual and his or her motivational postures. The place in between – the business office and what happens there in relation to tax compliance – does not receive enough attention. This article makes up for this neglect by showing how tax compliance practices can be made the object of analysis.