research was commissioned by the American Financial Executive Research

Research was commissioned by the american financial

This preview shows page 92 - 95 out of 354 pages.

research was commissioned by the American Financial Executive Research Foundation, which is, arguably, a constituency group of the FASB, which raises question about a potential conflict of interests . Despite these limitations, Mezias and Scarselletta’s study is a useful contribution to accounting standard setting. The findings of the analysis of
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79 FASB documents are significantly improved through the use of interviews. In addition, it is the only study that applies the concept of organised anarchies to accounting standard setting. Ryan (1998) examined the agenda formation process for the introduction of accrual accounting in the Australian public sector from 1976 to 1996. Prior studies that had examined this issue did not consider the actors and processes involved (Ryan 1998, pp. 519 and 533). Ryan’s paper utilises an agenda setting framework based on a slightly modified version of the three approaches to agenda building and elements of MS, in particular the concept of the PE. The paper’s main contributions are twofold and relate to the em pirical findings and theoretical contributions of the study. Ryan (1998, p. 533) suggests that: “the main finding of the study is that accrual reporting for the public sector became an issue because the political and economic environment existing in Australia since the late 1970s created the climate for the promotion of techniques which favoured reporting in the financial performance of governments and their agencies. These techniques were promoted by many influential public sector “policy entrepreneurs” operating from within government institutions, and often aligned with the organized accounting profession […]. The findings of this research support Kingdon’s (1984) proposition that ideas come from many sources, and what is important is the climate of “receptivity” that allows ideas to take hold. There is no one actor or event which determines a policy outcome. Items rise onto agendas due to several factors coming together at a given point in time, and not to the effect of one or another of them singly .” There are, however, a number of limitations to Ryan’s study. For example, it does not clarify the underlying epistemological or theoretical assumptions of the three approaches to agenda building or MS. Further, the combination of the two models reveals a contradiction. One of the distinguishing features and major contributions of MS is that public policy processes are not necessarily chronological, but are uncertain, and non-linear (Capano 2009, pp. 12-13) , whereas Cobb and Elder’s model is based on chronological events. Another limitation of Ryan’s study is the absence of any
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80 reference to “alternatives”, which are an essential element of MS (2011, p. 4). Further, Ryan’s study does not consider the role of institutional factors on actors and their l evel of agency. A last limitation of Ryan’s study (1998, p. 534) has been acknowledged by the author herself. The study does not consider the implications of change, particularly “as they apply to areas of public policy not previously reduced to accounti ng technologies”.
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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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