In 1991 I wandered into the field for the first time since I had left practice four years earlier. Not a single mention of doing field research had been made in my doctoral program at Michigan (and that was when Michigan was considered a broad focus accounting PhD program not like today). But I had attended Norman MacIntosh’s summer camps at Queen’s whilst I was allegedly on ” vacation” from Michigan for three of the five summers I was a student! There it was taken for granted that field research was a legitimate research method, albeit nearly impossible to publish in North American journals except when it involved transforming the data into numbers and running a lot of regressions on it! ( A tip of the hat to Ken Merchant and a few brave other folks in management accounting)
Today ( okay effective 2020) we have at The Accounting Review a new Senior Editor who has actually published a field research paper in Accounting and Finance! Yes Robert Knechel, that great archival, experimental and theoretical audit researcher, has also been involved in field research!
Then turning to Canada, the CAAA has appointed Alan Webb as incoming Editor in Chief of Contemporary Accounting Research. Alan has done experiential research with Mike Gibbins and I, and done field experiments in actual organizations in addition to the managerial experimental work he is best known for!
I have to say that no one would have believed me in 1991-92 when I said all this was possible!