National implications of accounting globalization: the case of Germany

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A call for a uniform high quality set of international accounting standards emerged in professional and academic accounting debates in the 1980's largely because of the globalization of production, development of global consumer and capital markets, and the growth of multinational enterprises. With the aim to reduce international differences in accounting standards, the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has been largely responsible for developing such a set of financial reporting standards for use internationally. The development of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) has been supported by the notion that a single set of high-quality global accounting standards is an important means of enhancing comparability of financial statements and reducing the cost of preparing financial statements. However, unique social, political, economic and cultural environments in countries are likely to undermine a consistent interpretation and application of IFRS internationally and thus the adoption of one set of standards internationally may not automatically lead to comparability in financial reporting. The objective of this chapter is to show that accounting as the language of business is deeply embedded in the context in which it operates in a country, and that this cannot be ignored in adopting !FRS. Extending the work of Hellmann, Perera and Patel (2010), this chapter critically examines the implications of globalization for accounting in Germany. The findings of this study raise important issues related to the adoption of IFRS, for example in the area of translation and interpretation of the standards, and provide insights into factors that may be acting as constraints on achieving the objectives of comparability of financial statements and reducing the cost ofpreparing them.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in business and management
EditorsWilliam D Nelson
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherNova Science Publications
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)9781621005100
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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