Confucian culture and whistle‐blowing by professional accountants: an exploratory study

Confucian culture and whistle‐blowing by professional accountants: an exploratory study Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to use survey data to examine the impact of culture on current and future accounting and auditing professionals' intent to be whistle‐blowers in a Chinese cultural society. Design/methodology/approach – The paper examines intent to whistle‐blow and factors influencing whistle‐blowing, using survey data collected by the authors. Findings – It was found that a majority of respondents believe that a general sense of morality was the most important factor to encourage whistle‐blowing, with abiding by the policy of their organization as the second; it was also found that guanxi , fear of retaliation, and fear of media coverage may discourage whistle‐blowing in a Chinese society. Research limitations/implications – The data are all from Confucian societies, which perhaps limits its usefulness elsewhere. Practical implications – The paper will help auditors, accountants, and policy makers to design policies that encourage whistle‐blowing. Originality/value – The paper uses original survey data collected by the authors, and the analysis will enable policy makers and professional accountants to anticipate and predict whistle‐blowing, a key factor in improving financial management and reporting, and possibly undermining auditor independence, audit quality, and the quality of financial reporting. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Managerial Auditing Journal Emerald Publishing

Confucian culture and whistle‐blowing by professional accountants: an exploratory study

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0268-6902
DOI
10.1108/02686900810875316
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to use survey data to examine the impact of culture on current and future accounting and auditing professionals' intent to be whistle‐blowers in a Chinese cultural society. Design/methodology/approach – The paper examines intent to whistle‐blow and factors influencing whistle‐blowing, using survey data collected by the authors. Findings – It was found that a majority of respondents believe that a general sense of morality was the most important factor to encourage whistle‐blowing, with abiding by the policy of their organization as the second; it was also found that guanxi , fear of retaliation, and fear of media coverage may discourage whistle‐blowing in a Chinese society. Research limitations/implications – The data are all from Confucian societies, which perhaps limits its usefulness elsewhere. Practical implications – The paper will help auditors, accountants, and policy makers to design policies that encourage whistle‐blowing. Originality/value – The paper uses original survey data collected by the authors, and the analysis will enable policy makers and professional accountants to anticipate and predict whistle‐blowing, a key factor in improving financial management and reporting, and possibly undermining auditor independence, audit quality, and the quality of financial reporting.

Journal

Managerial Auditing JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: May 23, 2008

Keywords: China; Confucianism; Auditing; Accountants; Whistleblowing; Ethics

References

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