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Charity performance reporting: comparing board and executive roles

Charity performance reporting: comparing board and executive roles Purpose – The purpose of this study is to compare the use of performance information by board members and executives of a large Australian community service organization in order to ascertain what they focused on and how they worked together in effecting organizational governance. Design/methodology/approach – Field based case study using stewardship theory. Findings – While board members and executives worked closely together within a mutually agreed organizational space, there was a clear bifurcation of focus with the board concerned more with the financial performance and the executive more with service performance. Further differentiation of role with respect to financial performance was observed such that the board's attention was directed most to issues that presented the greatest risk to the organization. The study found that board members and executives “cut across” traditionally assigned roles, thus demonstrating a joint mode of organizational governance that was underpinned by organizational policies, processes and structures. Research limitations/implications – This paper provides rich empirical evidence in relation to matters that have been subject to high levels of theorisation; by answering recent calls from scholars for in‐depth research on governance processes; and by identifying the common threads that link research on not‐for‐profit governance with stewardship theory and the extended concepts of accountability. It contributes to practice by providing a comprehensive explanation of a contemporary governance arrangement. It contributes to the public policy debate since a key issue currently under review in Australia, and New Zealand, to name just two jurisdictions, is the attribution of responsibilities by key decision makers in charities, in particular, the vexed question of management involvement in governance processes. Originality/value – The paper provides rich empirical data about an issue of ongoing importance to third sector organizations. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management Emerald Publishing

Charity performance reporting: comparing board and executive roles

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management , Volume 10 (3/4): 22 – Aug 23, 2013

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References (69)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2013 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1176-6093
DOI
10.1108/QRAM-05-2013-0018
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this study is to compare the use of performance information by board members and executives of a large Australian community service organization in order to ascertain what they focused on and how they worked together in effecting organizational governance. Design/methodology/approach – Field based case study using stewardship theory. Findings – While board members and executives worked closely together within a mutually agreed organizational space, there was a clear bifurcation of focus with the board concerned more with the financial performance and the executive more with service performance. Further differentiation of role with respect to financial performance was observed such that the board's attention was directed most to issues that presented the greatest risk to the organization. The study found that board members and executives “cut across” traditionally assigned roles, thus demonstrating a joint mode of organizational governance that was underpinned by organizational policies, processes and structures. Research limitations/implications – This paper provides rich empirical evidence in relation to matters that have been subject to high levels of theorisation; by answering recent calls from scholars for in‐depth research on governance processes; and by identifying the common threads that link research on not‐for‐profit governance with stewardship theory and the extended concepts of accountability. It contributes to practice by providing a comprehensive explanation of a contemporary governance arrangement. It contributes to the public policy debate since a key issue currently under review in Australia, and New Zealand, to name just two jurisdictions, is the attribution of responsibilities by key decision makers in charities, in particular, the vexed question of management involvement in governance processes. Originality/value – The paper provides rich empirical data about an issue of ongoing importance to third sector organizations.

Journal

Qualitative Research in Accounting & ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 23, 2013

Keywords: Performance reporting; Community service organization; Board‐executive relationship; Stewardship theory; Charities; Australia

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