Virtues of Integrity and Veracity in Reporting, Data Alone Is Not Enough. A Case Study Approach
European Accounting and Management Review, Vol. 4, No. 2, 93-110
18 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2018 Last revised: 12 Oct 2018
Date Written: May 25, 2018
One of the claims made in reporting is that firms should publish more information, both quantitative and qualitative. The annual reports of companies are thought precisely to fulfill this function: allowing the ones who have any type of interest in companies to be aware of the data, both quantitative and qualitative (in the form of annual reports). In this paper, we argue that data alone is not enough. We use the case of the company Fish&Fish, Inc. to show that the problem goes beyond the data itself. The most well calculated data and the most detailed reports could be insufficient to deter future ethical misbehaviors or to perform ethical behavior for the stakeholders. We argue that data must be complemented with several ethical virtues: integrity on the managerial part, veracity in the way reports are written. These two should also be complemented with justice, meaning that balancing several interests that parties have at the same time and managing the way integrity and veracity needs to be implemented in reporting decisions. Looking at Fish&Fish, Inc. we show that the main problems was the lack of veracity and integrity in the reporting that may mask present or future fraud.
Keywords: Reporting, Management Control Systems, Justice, Fairness, Virtues, Integrity, Veracity, Accounting Fraud
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