On the Interplay between Strategy and Management Control Systems
There is considerable academic interest for the interplay between strategy and management control systems (MCS). Strategic performance measurement systems (SPMS), such as Simons’ levers of control and Kaplan and Norton's balanced scorecard were introduced in the normative literature as vehicles for developing and implementing strategy. But there are also numerable case studies and surveys that investigate empirical evidence of the interplay between management control and strategy derived from management practices. This paper is a review of the extant literature aimed at identifying developments and gaps within this specific area of accounting research. To this end literature from six fields of research has been searched in a structured manner using exhaustive search algorithms. Studies are analysed using Mohr’s (1982) approaches to explanation and frameworks of Langfield-Smith (1997) and Keating (1995). The review by Langfield-Smith (1997) indicated that literature in this specific area of scholarly inquiry is characterized by a diversity of research designs and ambiguity in operationalization of - among other variables - strategy. Analysis of survey & case based research performed during the last decade reveals that operationalization of strategy is more than often based on one of the established strategy frameworks and is currently not as diverse as reported in Langfield-Smith (1997). Several scholars indicate that knowledge in this area is still rather limited, however comparison among studies provides insights that have not been made explicit.
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- Langfield-Smith, Kim, 1997. "Management control systems and strategy: A critical review," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 207-232, February.
- Saravanamuthu, Kala & Tinker, Tony, 2003. "Politics of managing: the dialectic of control," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 37-64, January.
- Chapman, Christopher S., 1997. "Reflections on a contingent view of accounting," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 189-205, February.
- Chenhall, Robert H., 2003. "Management control systems design within its organizational context: findings from contingency-based research and directions for the future," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 28(2-3), pages 127-168.
- Abernethy, Margaret A. & Brownell, Peter, 1999. "The role of budgets in organizations facing strategic change: an exploratory study," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 189-204, April.
- Chenhall, Robert H., 2005. "Integrative strategic performance measurement systems, strategic alignment of manufacturing, learning and strategic outcomes: an exploratory study," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 395-422, July.
- Baines, Annette & Langfield-Smith, Kim, 2003. "Antecedents to management accounting change: a structural equation approach," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 28(7-8), pages 675-698.
- Bisbe, Josep & Batista-Foguet, Joan-Manuel & Chenhall, Robert, 2007. "Defining management accounting constructs: A methodological note on the risks of conceptual misspecification," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 32(7-8), pages 789-820.
- Ittner, Christopher D. & Larcker, David F., 2001. "Assessing empirical research in managerial accounting: a value-based management perspective," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1-3), pages 349-410, December.
- Luft, Joan & Shields, Michael D., 2003. "Mapping management accounting: graphics and guidelines for theory-consistent empirical research," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 28(2-3), pages 169-249.
- Chenhall, R. H. & Langfield-Smith, K., 1998. "The relationship between strategic priorities, management techniques and management accounting: an empirical investigation using a systems approach," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 243-264, April.
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