Klumpes 1994 also used the three approaches to agenda building He considered

Klumpes 1994 also used the three approaches to agenda

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Klumpes (1994) also used the three approaches to agenda building. He considered the “rule -making contest between the accounting profession (the profession) and an alliance of pension industry interest groups (the ‘alliance’) over the introduction of different forms of regulation (accounting standards versus legislative-backed rules) relating to pension fund accounting” (Klumpes 1994, p. 140). The study highlights how the alliance dominated the agenda formation process (Howieson 2009b, p. 29). Klumpes argued that from a government’s perspective, the debate about pension funds is consistent with the ‘outside initiative’ model. He suggested that the alliance ultimately prevailed over the accounting profession for a number of reasons: The actuaries had a technical advantage over the profession; The proposed accounting changes were too radical (adoption of full fair value accounting); The alliance had greater access to government (due to public policy encouragement of privately funded retirement provisions); and There was a potential misjudgement by the profession and the standard setters of the role and power of the government agency Insurance and Superannuation Commission (ISC), who ended up developing the respective regulations. Klumpes’ findings are consisten t with the four phases of the agenda formation process. However, the match with the ‘outside initiative’ approach is less convincing. For example, it is not clear which party represented the ‘outside initiative’ approach (the alliance or the professions? ), or what is meant by “from a government’s perspective” (Klumpes 1994, p. 140) . Klumpes’ study also might have benefited from a more in -
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30 depth theoretical, rather than the mere descriptive application. While, in comparison to the Walker and Robinson’s st udy, the motivations of the interest groups were outlined in more detail, Klumpes’ study would have further benefited from a clarification of the data sources as it is difficult for the reader to assess the completeness, and hence, the quality of the study. The use of interview data might have provided further insights, as many aspects of the processes under investigation are often not documented in writing. Klumpes’ 1995 study considered the agenda formation process for accounting for Australian life in surance. The study argued that the actuarial profession used an ‘inside access’ approach to incorporate their actuarial based ‘margin of services’ method onto the government’s formal agenda, rather than allowing the accounting standard setters to develop accounting based principles for the treatment of life insurances at the time. The study matched the events to the four stages of agenda building. Klumpes (1995, p. 4) suggested that the events under consideration reflect the ‘inside access’ model. The two Klumpes studies have many similarities and the limitation noted for the first study is also applicable here. Another limitation for the 1995 study is recognised by Klumpes himself. The study does not address the question of why the actuarial
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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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