Theory Testing and Process Evidence in Accounting Experiments

H. Scott Asay, Ryan Guggenmos, Kathryn Kadous, Lisa Koonce, Robert Libby; Theory Testing and Process Evidence in Accounting Experiments. The Accounting Review 2021; doi: https://doi.org/10.2308/TAR-2019-1001

50 Pages Posted: 25 Nov 2019 Last revised: 20 Dec 2021

See all articles by H. Scott Asay

H. Scott Asay

University of Iowa - Department of Accounting

Ryan Guggenmos

SC Johnson Graduate School of Management; Cornell SC Johnson College of Business

Kathryn Kadous

Emory University - Goizueta Business School

Lisa Koonce

University of Texas

Robert Libby

Cornell University - Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management

Date Written: November 2, 2021

Abstract

This paper discusses the role of process evidence in accounting research. We define process evidence broadly as data providing insight into how and why cause-effect relationships occur, and we provide a framework to guide the provision and evaluation of process evidence in accounting studies. Our definition allows for an expanded understanding of techniques for gathering process evidence. The framework highlights the importance of the study’s goals and theory in choosing how to provide process evidence as well as how much process evidence to provide. The paper also outlines the strengths and limitations of three approaches to providing process evidence: mediation, moderation, and multiple-study based designs. We provide recommendations for best practices for each approach to minimize threats to validity and maximize the value of process evidence.

Keywords: experimental research, process evidence, moderation, mediation, multiple experiments, experimental design

JEL Classification: M41, M42, C91

Suggested Citation

Asay, Hamilton Scott and Guggenmos, Ryan and Kadous, Kathryn and Koonce, Lisa L. and Libby, Robert, Theory Testing and Process Evidence in Accounting Experiments (November 2, 2021). H. Scott Asay, Ryan Guggenmos, Kathryn Kadous, Lisa Koonce, Robert Libby; Theory Testing and Process Evidence in Accounting Experiments. The Accounting Review 2021; doi: https://doi.org/10.2308/TAR-2019-1001, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3485844 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3485844

Hamilton Scott Asay

University of Iowa - Department of Accounting ( email )

S232 Pappajohn Business Building
Iowa City, IA 52242-1000
United States

Ryan Guggenmos

SC Johnson Graduate School of Management ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853
United States

Cornell SC Johnson College of Business ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14850
United States

Kathryn Kadous

Emory University - Goizueta Business School ( email )

1300 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322-2722
United States
404-727-4967 (Phone)

Lisa L. Koonce

University of Texas ( email )

Dept. of Accounting
McCombs School of Business
Austin, TX 78712
United States
512-471-5576 (Phone)
512-471-3904 (Fax)

Robert Libby (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853
United States
607-255-3348 (Phone)
607-254-4590 (Fax)

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