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Frankenstein's monster or the Birth of Venus? Perceptions of the impact and contributions of Ball and Brown 1968


  • Howieson, Bryan A.


This study explores perceptions of the impact of Ball and Brown (1968) (BB68) upon accounting research, education, standards-setting, and practice. These perceptions are gathered from an extensive literature review and from 27 interviewees drawn from academe, practice and standards-setting from around the globe. The study reports upon the genesis of BB68, it's disruptive effect on accounting research methodology and methods, and its broader impact on accounting education, practice and standards-setting. Reasons are provided for the popularity of BB68 and an exploration is undertaken of both the positive and negative impacts of the research methodology inspired by BB68. The characteristics of the Ball and Brown research team are also discussed and the paper finishes with perceptions regarding the future relevance of BB68. It is concluded that BB68 stands as an exemplar for innovation and for quality in the execution of accounting and finance research but that much of that innovative spirit has been lost as the BB68 methodology became mainstream.

Suggested Citation

  • Howieson, Bryan A., 2019. "Frankenstein's monster or the Birth of Venus? Perceptions of the impact and contributions of Ball and Brown 1968," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 299-328.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pacfin:v:55:y:2019:i:c:p:299-328
    DOI: 10.1016/j.pacfin.2019.05.003

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    Cited by:

    1. Aman, Hiroyuki & Beekes, Wendy & Berkman, Henk & Bohmann, Marc & Bradbury, Michael & Chapple, Larelle & Chang, Millicent & Clout, Victoria & Faff, Robert & Han, Jianlei & Hillier, David & Hodgson, All, 2019. "Responsible science: Celebrating the 50-year legacy of Ball and Brown (1968) using a registration-based framework," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 129-150.
    2. Robert W. Faff, 2019. "Financial Openness and Trade Openness Nexus: Empirical Evidence from Global Data," Capital Markets Review, Malaysian Finance Association, vol. 27(2), pages 1-13.

    More about this item


    Accounting practices; Accounting education; Ball and Brown 1968; Finance practices; Normative research; Positive research; Research impact; Research methodology; Research paradigms; Standards-setting;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • B2 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925
    • B3 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals
    • M4 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting


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