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Measuring the convergence of national accounting standards with international financial reporting standards: The application of fuzzy clustering analysis


  • Qu, Xiaohui
  • Zhang, Guohua


A single set of accounting standards is considered the path to achieving accounting convergence globally. Given the important role that formal harmonization/convergence plays in the accounting profession and global capital markets, this study focuses on the methods and methodology for the measurement of formal accounting convergence. Based on our review and evaluation of the existing methods for measuring the level of harmonization/convergence between any two sets of accounting standards, we propose using a new method of matching and fuzzy clustering analysis to assess the convergence progress of national accounting standards (NAS) with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) from whole and single standards, respectively. Single standards are clustered according to their convergence level, which may indicate further convergence emphasis. As an illustrative example, the achievements made in China are evaluated using this new method. The results reveal that this new method can measure the convergence level of NAS with IFRS more clearly and informatively.

Suggested Citation

  • Qu, Xiaohui & Zhang, Guohua, 2010. "Measuring the convergence of national accounting standards with international financial reporting standards: The application of fuzzy clustering analysis," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 334-355, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:accoun:v:45:y:2010:i:3:p:334-355

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Sally Aisbitt, 2001. "Measurement of harmony of financial reporting within and between countries: the case of the Nordic countries," European Accounting Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(1), pages 51-72.
    2. Garrido, Pascual & Leon, Angel & Zorio, Ana, 2002. "Measurement of formal harmonization progress:: The IASC experience," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 1-26.
    3. Lainez, Jose A. & Callao, Susana & Jarne, Jose I., 1996. "International harmonization of reporting required by stock markets," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 405-418.
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    Cited by:

    1. Carmen-Alexandra Baltariu & Andreea Cirstea, 2012. "Harmonization Of Goodwill Reporting Practice In The Consolidated Financial Statements Of Romanian Groups," Annales Universitatis Apulensis Series Oeconomica, Faculty of Sciences, "1 Decembrie 1918" University, Alba Iulia, vol. 2(14), pages 1-1.
    2. Cristina Silvia Nistor & Cristina Alexandrina Stefanescu, 2012. "Public vs. Banking Sector Accounting - How Far Is Romania from International Referential?," Acta Universitatis Danubius. OEconomica, Danubius University of Galati, issue 3(3), pages 86-100, June.
    3. Nadia ALBU & Ioana PALARIE, 2016. "Convergence of Romanian accounting regulations with IFRS. A longitudinal analysis," The Audit Financiar journal, Chamber of Financial Auditors of Romania, vol. 14(138), pages 634-634, June.
    4. Anh Tuan Nguyen & Guangming Gong, 2014. "Measurement of Formal Convergence of Vietnamese Accounting Standards with IFRS," Australian Accounting Review, CPA Australia, vol. 24(2), pages 182-197, June.
    5. Baltariu Carmen-Alexandra & Cirstea Andreea, 2012. "European Harmonization Of Consolidated Financial Statements Regulations?," Annals of Faculty of Economics, University of Oradea, Faculty of Economics, vol. 1(1), pages 860-865, July.


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