Reflections and projections: 30 years of the interdisciplinary accounting, auditing and accountability search for a fairer society

James Guthrie, Lee D. Parker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to reflect on 30 years of Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal (AAAJ), and contemplates the future. It makes a case for diversity, including a broad range of theories and research methodologies, as a defining feature of AAAJ. As we have done since 1988 in AAAJ’s first editorial, we continue to urge interdisciplinary accounting researchers to undertake innovative research and be both original and creative, avoiding the narrow focus and detachment from society that is characteristic of globally pervasive North American economics-based accounting research. Design/methodology/approach: The paper employs an analysis and critique of trends in interdisciplinary research, drawing upon the previous 29 editorials/commentaries published in AAAJ. It also elucidates the field of scholarship associated with AAAJ in 2016 as evidence of the patterning of recent research and publishing trends. Findings: This paper identifies challenges confronting interdisciplinary researchers in the globalised academic community. These include our obsession with theoretical engorgement and our adversarial rather than cooperative approach to knowledge development. Furthermore, the authors argue that researchers must reflect on their motivation, informing theories and values if they intend to contribute to practice, policy and a wider societal good. Accounting researchers have a responsibility to go beyond observation, engaging in and constructing a more equal and fair society. Originality/value: This commentary reflects on developments in AAAJ and its community over three decades. The authors also address the wider AAAJ community, including the Asia Pacific Interdisciplinary Research in Accounting (APIRA) conference attendees, AAAJ special issue editors, the editorial board, ad hoc reviewers, authors and supporters across AAAJ’s 30 years.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-17
Number of pages16
JournalAccounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal
Volume30
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • academic researchers
  • accountancy profession
  • interdisciplinary accounting
  • accounting and auditing research

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