As a result of these limitations the application of the theoretical models

As a result of these limitations the application of

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technologies”. As a result of these limitations, the application of the theoretical models appears to leave the full theoretical potential unexplored. Despite these limitations, Ryan’s study is a significant contribution to the accounting standard agenda setting literature. It demonstrates a thorough documentation of the events under examination, utilising many primary sources such as government reports and minutes of meetings. It is also the first study to apply a more sophisticated public policy model (MS) to investigate the agenda formation process in an accounting context. As noted by Howieson (2009b, pp. 39-40) , “[s]urprisingly, the paper is silent on its significance as a study in agenda setting in an accounting context”. Singh and Newberry (2007) examined the agenda setting process at the IASB (and its predecessor, the IASC) in the adoption of IFRSs by small and medium sized entities (SMEs) in developing countries from the early 1960s. The study analysed documents including submissions to IASB EDs a nd IASB surveys. As with Ryan’s study, Singh and Newberry’s paper also supplemented MS with the three approaches of agenda building. The study confirmed MS’ suggestion tha t all streams need to be coupled for an issue to enter and stay on an agenda. While the development of accounting standards for developing countries was discussed three times at the IASB/IASC level, the study suggested that the proposals to develop specific standards for these countries were not
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81 initially acceptable to the policy makers in 1989. The study, however, does not explain why the issue was dropped from the IASB agenda in 1998. The study further suggests that, in line with MS, once a solution emerged it was offered to developing countries. The study is a thorough historical account of the relationship between the IASB (and the IASC) and developing countries from its emergence until 2008. The study would have benefitted from a more in-depth application of MS and the three approaches to agenda building. For example, the historical events could have been more clearly linked to the three streams of MS. A theoretical consideration of the role of institutional factors, as well as the role and level of agency of the policy entrepreneurs has been neglected. As recognised by the authors, the analysis of documents has limitations for the findings. Interviews with involved stakeholders would have helped clarify some of the ambiguities of the study. As with Ryan’s study, the potential of MS remains unexplored, resulting in a descriptive rather than an analytical application. In summary, the three studies demonstrate that MS offers a holistic theoretical framework in which to investigate an agenda setting process as it highlights the critical factors of this process. However, the theoretical potential of MS has, so far, remained underutilised. Document analysis appears to be insufficient to investigate accounting agenda setting processes, as the documentation often begins once an issue has been placed onto an agenda for longer-term considerations.
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  • Fall '13
  • Government, The Land, International Financial Reporting Standards, Financial Accounting Standards Board, Australian Accounting Standards Board, Snow

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