| A new (free) publication released on 4 July 2011 urges accounting researchers, policy makers and practitioners to unite and work towards forming a collaborative agreement, so more relevant academic research is produced to benefit the accounting profession and society.
'Much of the accounting research produced lacks relevance and is orientated towards other academics when it should set out to improve public policy and accounting practice,' said Professor James Guthrie, the Head of Academic Relations at the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (the Institute), and co-editor of the new book, Bridging the Gap between Academic Accounting Research and Professional Practice .
'While accounting doesn't have life and death consequences, the profession can learn a lot from how the medical world inter-relates with research, policy and practice. What we need is detailed discussions with key stakeholders from across the accounting profession, with defined roles and responsibilities agreed. That way, research will be of more value and impact for practitioners and the public.'
The publication was commissioned by the Centre for Accounting, Governance and Sustainability (CAGS) in the School of Commerce at the University of South Australia and launched at the Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand (AFAANZ) Conference in Darwin.
The publication also recommends:
- Greater incentives for academics to engage more with policy and practice, so the research produced benefits all parties. E.g. business school leaders and faculty members should have Performance Indicators (PIs) set in relation to industry engagement, as part of their accountability and professional development plans
- Place more academic staff into businesses, regulatory agencies and professional services firms so they can experience the real world of accounting. This cross fertilisation would be for extended periods domestically and internationally, and provide an alternative form of outside study. Conversely, practitioners and policy makers should experience accounting research and teaching so greater understanding is achieved from all sides
- Adapting academic research papers into professional publications so they are more easily understood and useful for practitioners and policy makers.
Prof. Roger Burritt from CAGS and co-editor of the book added, 'Accounting academics should not be promoted solely on their publication quality because this can lead to an inward looking and self-serving view of academic accounting research. Rather, senior university managers, accounting practitioners and the government need to unite to produce relevant and practical research as part of their everyday work.'
For a free copy of the book go to: www.charteredaccountants.com.au/academic or www.unisa.ed.au/cags