Problem-Centered Research and Knowledge-Based Theory in the Professional Accounting Setting
Accounting, Organizations and Society Volume 18, Issue 5, July 1993, Pages 451–466
Posted: 2 Jul 2013
Date Written: June 1, 1992
The paper discussess the emerging need for theory development and much more extensive task and context analysis with respect to cognition in the professional accounting setting (“accounting” being taken to include the various accounting, auditing, tax and related subjects about which accounting professionals exercise judgment). The paper examines how such theory development and task and context analysis can improve the research and its contribution to understanding the professional settings that are the province of accounting research. Our analysis reflects our proposal that accounting judgment research contribute more strongly to the general body of accounting research, and deal better with practitioners' problems. From our analysis, we conclude that the lack of theory development is associated with several problems in the research, including an over-emphasis on transference of simplified models from psychology, inappropriate use of normative criteria for evaluating performance, and an over-emphasis on accountants and auditors rather than accounting and auditing. We offer a large number of constructive comments about task analysis, theory development and other steps to guide future accounting judgment research.
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