Musings on Accounting Research by Steve

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I will be “girding my loins” to enjoy the doctoral symposium of AFAANZ today.  I was a guest of the symposium in 2011 when I was a plenary speaker at AFAANZ main conference.  I promised that I would return one day as a regular resident faculty member and this is that day.  Thanks to David Smith and company for having me.

I must say that one thing that strikes me about AFAANZ doctoral symposium both this year and in 2011, for a country that has such a diverse research tradition, the representation of students at AFAANZ is strongly capitial markets and finanical economics.  Any American faculty member would not feel out of place here with 75% or more of the students being some version of finanical economics based.  One of those strange puzzles about the big down under (or up there depending on your perspective).

In any case, as being the faculty member in the miscellaneous group I am looking forward to a set of really great presentations if the papers provided are any indication.

GMARS doctoral symposium

I like to pickup on ideas in my rare trips around the world.  I had heard of the GMARS doctoral symposium but I had never managed to talk my way into it.  This year I was allowed to observe.  Most interesting approach.  Students present research, faculty do a formal discussion (as Eddy Cardinaels learned at the last minute that means powerpoint slides) and then a general discussion ensues.  It seemed to me to be a real risk!  What if faculty blew away the paper, would doctoral students have any comments that did not mimic the faculty member’s discussion, etc????  Well it worked and worked well.  I think you need to have a very special set of faculty to make it work, but apparently the UNSW Sydney (the only U I know that has rebranded three times in five years) can make it work.  Salute to Kerry Humphreys and her gang especially her main assistants Paul Andon and Yee Shih Phua as well as the key faculty.

GMARS is still the best MA conference

Without doubt GMARS is by far the best Management Accounting conference on the planet.  While others may be larger, or have individual years where they excel, for consistent high quality management accounting research you cannot beat GMARS.

This year in Sydney was no exception.  Under relatively newbie conference chair Jane Baxter there was an excellent selection of social and behavioral management accounting research with a bit of economics based work thrown in.  The latter was a bit of a disappointment but it just may have been a thin year for archival based MA research.

The social and behavioral work was excellent with experimental economics, psychology based, case and field studies, survey based research all well represented.  I got to present a paper for the first time in 11 appearances at GMARS (those who know me know that my management accounting work has been spotty in recent years after three top tier papers at the turn of the century), notched another discussion (11th discussion I believe) and a late breaking addition to the program – an editor’s panel.

I was so kind, I did not mention the SSCI during my time on the editor’s panel 🙂  Maybe I can be a diplomat in my old age.

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