I give consent to this copy of my thesis when deposited in the University

I give consent to this copy of my thesis when

This preview shows page 14 - 17 out of 354 pages.

responsible for the joint-award of this degree. I give consent to this copy of my thesis, when deposited in the University Library, being made available for loan and photocopying, subject to the provisions of the Copyright Act 1968. I also give permission for the digital version of my thesis to be made available on the web, via the University ’s digital research repository, the Library catalogue and also through web search engines, unless permission has been granted by the University to restrict access for a period of time. Sabine Schührer Adelaide, 28 February 2014
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1 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION 1.1 INTRODUCTION TO THE RESEARCH PROJECT Since the late 1980s, public sector accounting in many jurisdictions has undergone significant change, often as part of the so called New Public Management reforms 1 . Most notably was the change from cash to accrual accounting, but there were also the developments of whole of government 2 financial reporting, also referred to as consolidated governmental reporting. Whilst the former has received considerable academic attention, consolidated public sector reporting has only recently emerged as a topic of debate, although some countries have experimented with consolidated accounts for some time. For example, the government of the United States of America first produced consolidated accounts in the 1970s (Chan 2009). Australia, together with New Zealand, is considered to be a pioneer in public sector financial reporting in general (Carlin 2005; Guthrie 1998; Pallot 2001), but also in consolidated governmental reporting. New Zealand’s first whole of government accounts were published in 1993. Australia issued its first whole of government accounts in 1989 in the State of New South Wales and for the financial year 1994/95 at the Federal level. The first consolidated financial report based on accrual accounting in Australia was produced by the New South Wales Government for the financial year 1991-92 (Christensen 2003). By 2003-04 all Australian federal, state and territory Governments had adopted and implemented requirements for accrual based whole of government financial reporting. 1 New Public Management generally describes the reform to modernize governments from the early 1980s. The main hypothesis was that private sector methods would lead to greater cost-efficiency. 2 The whole of government comprises of three sectors: the general government sector (e.g., government departments), the public financial corporation sector (financial corporations controlled by the government, e.g., The Reserve Bank) and the public non-financial corporation sector (non-financial corporations controlled by the governments, e.g., the South Australian Water Corporation).
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2 The bases for those reports were, on the one hand, the macroeconomic statistical Framework Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods 3 (ABS GFS Manual) provided by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS 2001a) and, on the other hand, Australian Accounting Standard AAS 31 Financial Reporting by Governments , issued by the Australian Public Sector Accounting
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  • Government, The Land, International Financial Reporting Standards, Financial Accounting Standards Board, Australian Accounting Standards Board, Snow

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