There has been considerable interest in the literature about how professions operate in both the private and public interest. This paper examines this issue in the context of the enforcement of the professional code of conduct of a particular professional accounting association. The paper explores whether certain enforcement actions of the association suggest behaviour motivated at least partially by private interest. It then considers whether the consequences of such behaviour or practices are troubling.
This paper reviews the current commitment of accounting academics to teaching accounting ethics. In the course of the review it assesses the recent initiative of the American Accounting Association; namely, Ethics in the Accounting Curriculum: Cases and Readings, 1994. This collection of cases has not been widely adopted despite an identified lack of case materials available to those teaching accounting ethics. The question becomes whether the lack of adoption suggests that accounting academics are not particularly interested in incorporating ethical issues (...) in the classroom or whether there are difficulties with the quality of the collection. The paper continues by examining the current state of research in accounting ethics and again asks what this tells us about commitment to teaching accounting ethics. While the conclusions of this examination are far from definitive, there are signs that all is not well with the accounting ethics discipline. (shrink)
Independence is a fundamental concept to the audit. There is a clear relationship between independence and conflict of interest in all professions. This paper examines this relationship in the auditing profession and in the context of three specific practices. The paper analyses these practices by using the Davis model of conflict of interest. The results of this analysis give rise to some interesting questions for the ethical practices of the auditing profession.
The actuarial profession has a long history of providing critical expertise to society. The services delivered are some of the most complex and mysterious to outsiders of all professions but little has been written about the professional responsibilities of actuaries in the academic literature beyond that of the profession itself. This paper makes the case that the issues surrounding professional independence of actuaries are, in principle, similar to those that faced the audit profession before the scandals and resultant regulatory changes (...) early this century. It is argued that, despite the position taken by the actuarial profession and management, the status quo raises genuine concerns about conflicts of interest and independence and that the risks that arise are of sufficient magnitude that they should at least be the subject of a full debate. (shrink)