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Public sector accounting and accountability in an era of austerity: new directions, challenges and deficits

A main aim of this AAAJ special issue is to ensure that the subject of accounting and austerity starts to get the research focus it deserves, with the presented empirical and conceptual analysis both enhancing understanding and stimulating further discussion of changing patterns of accountability and the role of accounting and accountants under austerity. Austerity poses new challenges to budgeting, measurement and reporting systems, which may themselves need significant rethinking. The papers in the special issue consider such matters in a variety of ways, from the defining qualities of budgets and financial reporting standards in framing the scale, significance and pressing immediacy of austerity (Heald and Hodges, 2015) to the financial management and control practices of local governments (Van der Kolk et al., 2015) and other public service providers, including grassroots and charitable organizations (Ferry and Ahrens, 2015), in implementing, defending themselves against and mitigating blame for austerity cuts, as well as the role of supranational institutions (Lapsley et al., 2015).


Accounting for austerity: the troika in the eurozone,Constraining and facilitating management control in times of austerity: case studies in four municipal departments,Newcastle City Council and the grassroots: accountability and budgeting under austerity,Public sector accounting, accountability and austerity: more than balancing the books?,Will 'austerity' be a critical juncture in European public sector financial reporting?

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