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Accounting research: a critical view of the present situation and prospects

In this study we critically review the internal procedures of the accounting community for generating and disseminating knowledge. We contend that academic journals on accounting research are scarce, publish few articles and apply high rejection rates, and the review process is lengthy and expensive. Additionally, an academic elite has unparalleled predominance in comparison to other business disciplines, reflected in an unusual share of published articles with authors affiliated to a small number of academic institutions, and the predominance of certain topics and methodologies. The discipline does not allow the collaborative, iterative and flexible features of innovative knowledge communities. The discipline¿s internal procedures favour restriction, control, slowness, and expiration, rather than participation, speed and renewal. They are ill suited for advancing knowledge and bode badly for successful research. As a result, accounting academics present low research performance and the discipline is facing steady decline. More importantly, the discipline is handicapped in producing innovative knowledge able to contribute to critical research and long term social well-being. We also focus on the Spanish institutional situation, arguing that Spanish requirements for reaching tenured positions are difficult for accountants to meet. We highlight the need to raise awareness of the problem and change the procedures.

Josep Maria Argilés Bosch

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