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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to identify stakeholders’ expectations of information to be conveyed in local authorities’ annual reports and to develop an index of best practice performance reporting. Design/methodology/approach – The paper describes the development of a disclosure index emphasizing the public interest aspect of reporting and the need to provide relevant and meaningful information to stakeholders. The index was crafted from a public accountability perspective and based on the expectations of stakeholders as reconciled and validated by a Delphi panel of experts. Findings – The wide scope of information that was identified as being important for disclosure by local authorities is consistent with the public accountability paradigm which requires the reporting of comprehensive information (both financial and non financial), about the condition, performance, activities and progress of the entity. Originality/value – The research posits a model of best practice performance reporting for Malaysian, and other, local authorities to meet the need for greater accountability by these entities.
Journal of Applied Accounting Research – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 23, 2012
Keywords: Disclosure index; Accountability; Delphi; Local authorities; Malaysia; Disclosure; Delphi method
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