Intrinsic Motivation and Extrinsic Incentives: An Experimental Investigation of Endogenous Guidance and Gatekeeper Behaviour
Amy K. Choy
University of Alberta - Department of Accounting, Operations & Information Systems
Ronald R. King
Washington University in Saint Louis - John M. Olin Business School
January 4, 2008
(CAAA) 2008 Annual Conference Paper
Incentives affect the manner in which auditors conduct their audits and one important research question is how different types of incentives affect behavior. The objectives of this paper are to examine how auditors' intrinsic motivation could be augmented by their participation in developing the guidance, and to examine how extrinsic incentives such as financial sanctions affect auditors' willingness to withstand client pressure. We are also interested in examining the interaction between these two types of incentives. We find that both intrinsic motivation and extrinsic incentives increase auditor willingness to withstand client pressure; however, extrinsic motivation crowds out intrinsic motivation, leading to lower guidance standards. We also find that when auditors face financial sanctions for accepting low proposals, managers raise the value of their proposals to increase the chance of gaining approval from the auditors.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 27
Keywords: Intrinsic motivation, extrinsic incentive, endogenous guidance, GAAP, gatekeeper, experiments
JEL Classification: M41, C79, M49working papers series
Date posted: January 15, 2008
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