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Roles, Authority and Involvement of the Management Accounting Function: A Multiple Case-study Perspective

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  • Caroline Lambert
  • Samuel Sponem
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    Abstract

    Recent techniques and shifts in the environment are often viewed as leading management accountants to adopt a business orientation. However, empirical evidence pointing to clear shifts in the role played by management accountants remains relatively scarce. From in-depth qualitative research based on 73 interviews in ten multinational companies, we identify four distinct styles of management accounting function: discrete, safeguarding, partner, and omnipotent. We show that each style can be associated with one main role: discrete control of managerial behaviour, socialisation of managers, facilitation of decision-making, and centralisation of power. From this in-depth analysis of management accountants' styles and roles we move on to discuss the authority they hold and the independence/involvement dilemma they face.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1080/09638180.2011.629415
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal European Accounting Review.

    Volume (Year): 21 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 3 (September)
    Pages: 565-589

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:euract:v:21:y:2012:i:3:p:565-589

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