Contemporary Professional Work: Accounting and Beyond
The study of the accounting profession looms large in interdisciplinary accounting research, where it is an enduring cornerstone of the field. Many studies have explored the development of the accounting profession, the growth in power and importance of the Big Four accounting firms and the working lives of those employed therein (Anderson Gough et al, 1998, 2000; Grey, 1998; Cooper and Robson, 2006; Suddaby et al., 2007; Seabrooke and Tsingou, 2015). Interdisciplinary accounting’s long-standing interest in professions is resonant with the recent reanimation of interest in professions and elites across the social sciences, due in no small part to the rediscovery of the agency of professionals in broader social processes (Arnold, 2005; Carruthers and Halliday, 2009; Dezalay and Garth, 2010; Scott, 2008; Hwang and Powell, 2009) , After all, “professionals and professional service firms are key advisors, analysts, defenders, and developers of the major institutions, such as markets, organizational forms, and business practices, that underpin our economies” (Muzio et al., 2013, p. 699). Current research within the distinct but related research fields of interdisciplinary perspectives on accounting, sociology of the professions, and the professional services firm all seek to explain developments and changes to professions and professional work.