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Accounting, professions and regulation: Locating the sites of professionalization

Cooper, David J. and Robson, Keith 2006. Accounting, professions and regulation: Locating the sites of professionalization. Accounting Organizations and Society 31 (4-5) , pp. 415-444. 10.1016/j.aos.2006.03.003

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This review paper argues that the institutions and sites of professionalization projects and regulatory processes matter. The institutions and locations where regulation takes place affect both the outcome of the regulatory process and the legitimacy of the rules and practices produced. Changes in regulatory processes affect opportunities for democratic control and legitimacy. A common position in the accounting literature is to examine both the process of professionalization and accounting and audit regulation within and around professional associations and related organizations, such as standard setting bodies and regulatory agencies. We argue that professional firms are increasingly important in professionalization and regulatory processes and have not received the attention that they warrant: an examination of the multi-national professional service firms (currently known as the Big 4) can enhance an understanding of professionalization and professional regulation. We suggest that these are important sites where accounting practices are themselves standardized and regulated, where accounting rules and standards are translated into practice, where professional identities are mediated, formed and transformed, and where important conceptions of personal, professional and corporate governance and management are transmitted.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
ISSN: 0361-3682
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2017 01:43

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