Accounting, management, and accountability in times of crisis: lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic

Giulia Leoni*, Alessandro Lai, Riccardo Stacchezzini, Ileana Steccolini, Stephen J. Brammer, Martina Linnenluecke, Istemi Demirag

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to discuss the themes emerging from the first studies exploring accounting, accountability, and management practices during the COVID-19 pandemic and coming from a diversity of experiences, across countries, organizations, and individuals. In so doing, the paper gives an overview of the most recent findings about the role of accounting and accountability in times of crisis that are hosted in this special issue of Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal (AAAJ).

Design/methodology/approach: The paper draws together and identifies emerging themes related to the current COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts on accounting, accountability, and management practices and considers how the studies in this issue extend our knowledge of accounting and contribute to accounting research.

Findings: Three emerging themes are drawn and their contribution to accounting scholarship is discussed. The first theme deals with the role of accounting and numbers in supporting governmental responses to COVID-19. The second theme considers accounting practices used to make exceptional decisions at the organisational level in times of crisis. The third theme addresses a relevant frontier of research into accounting, and inequalities.

Practical implications: In considering the diverse contributions of this special issue, the paper points out how uncertainty and change can impact the design, use, and understanding of accounting, management, and accountability practices and can be accepted by scholars and practitioners as part of such practices.

Originality/value: This paper provides a timely and comprehensive picture of the first reflections and research findings on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our interpretation of accounting, accountability, and management practices
Original languageEnglish
JournalAccounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

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