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A project for Romania? The role of the civil society’s counter-accounts in facilitating democratic change in society

A project for Romania? The role of the civil society’s counter-accounts in facilitating... Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to look more closely, in the context of a given case study, at the role of civil society’s counter-accounts in facilitating democratic change in society, as an essential goal of an emancipatory and radical social accounting project. Design/methodology/approach – A case study of a Canadian company’s plans to open a gold mine in western Romania is here analysed. Civil society’s opposition to the mining project gave rise to an unprecedented social movement contesting the project’s utility for Romanian society. The role played by counter-accounts produced by civil society groups is investigated. Findings – Counter-accounts produced by civil society played multiple roles in the case study analysed. First, counter-accounts indicated the failure of corporate reports to present the gold mining project in a balanced manner. Second, counter-accounts were successful in problematizing the corporate approach to addressing the social, cultural and environmental impacts of the project, while also nurturing societal debate on these issues. Third, counter-accounts exposed the ideological inclinations of state institutions to favour economic interests over the social, cultural and environmental ones. As a result of these contributions, even if the counter-accounts were subjective, this study claims that they form a good basis for the development of emancipatory accounting. Research limitations/implications – Limitations associated with an interpretative approach and case study research apply. Originality/value – The paper illustrates the potential of civil society’s counter accounts to enable societal debates, as means towards democratic, transformative change. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Accounting Auditing & Accountability Journal Emerald Publishing

A project for Romania? The role of the civil society’s counter-accounts in facilitating democratic change in society

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References (73)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0951-3574
DOI
10.1108/AAAJ-07-2012-01057
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to look more closely, in the context of a given case study, at the role of civil society’s counter-accounts in facilitating democratic change in society, as an essential goal of an emancipatory and radical social accounting project. Design/methodology/approach – A case study of a Canadian company’s plans to open a gold mine in western Romania is here analysed. Civil society’s opposition to the mining project gave rise to an unprecedented social movement contesting the project’s utility for Romanian society. The role played by counter-accounts produced by civil society groups is investigated. Findings – Counter-accounts produced by civil society played multiple roles in the case study analysed. First, counter-accounts indicated the failure of corporate reports to present the gold mining project in a balanced manner. Second, counter-accounts were successful in problematizing the corporate approach to addressing the social, cultural and environmental impacts of the project, while also nurturing societal debate on these issues. Third, counter-accounts exposed the ideological inclinations of state institutions to favour economic interests over the social, cultural and environmental ones. As a result of these contributions, even if the counter-accounts were subjective, this study claims that they form a good basis for the development of emancipatory accounting. Research limitations/implications – Limitations associated with an interpretative approach and case study research apply. Originality/value – The paper illustrates the potential of civil society’s counter accounts to enable societal debates, as means towards democratic, transformative change.

Journal

Accounting Auditing & Accountability JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 16, 2015

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