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The future of interpretive accounting research The contribution of McCracken's (1988) approach

The future of interpretive accounting research The contribution of McCracken's (1988) approach Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the polyphonic debate on the future of interpretive accounting research (IAR) by addressing the issues of cumulative knowledge and embedment of IAR in wider literatures. Design/methodology/approach – McCracken's method of inquiry, adapted to incorporate meso‐level considerations, can be used to help resolve these issues. Accounting‐related phenomena can be studied by first identifying the cumulative knowledge contributed by different theoretical perspectives that provides broad skeletal categories to be investigated in the context of an interpretive study. In addition, micro‐ and macro‐level “external” theories are incorporated in a global meso‐level framework to provide a high‐level lens to guide data generation and analysis, fostering the embedment of IAR in wider literatures. Findings – Meso‐level research implies thinking organizationally and behaviourally, and thinking about linkage. By extension, it requires reflecting on the characteristics of the context in which the phenomenon occurs and the actors behave, the nature of the task or decision to perform, and possible links between macro‐ and micro‐factors that help identify “external” theories and frameworks that contribute to understanding the phenomenon. Research limitations/implications – The contribution of the suggested approach is highlighted in the context of financial accounting research. Reflexive accounts on the choice and use of a meso‐level approach are presented, and the issue of appropriate balance between theoretical and empirical material is addressed. Originality/value – Creativity is fostered when cumulative knowledge about a specific phenomenon is embedded in wider meso‐level theoretical perspectives, leading to the discovery of new insights about the topic under study and contributing to the advancement of knowledge. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management Emerald Publishing

The future of interpretive accounting research The contribution of McCracken's (1988) approach

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References (99)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1176-6093
DOI
10.1108/11766090910973902
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the polyphonic debate on the future of interpretive accounting research (IAR) by addressing the issues of cumulative knowledge and embedment of IAR in wider literatures. Design/methodology/approach – McCracken's method of inquiry, adapted to incorporate meso‐level considerations, can be used to help resolve these issues. Accounting‐related phenomena can be studied by first identifying the cumulative knowledge contributed by different theoretical perspectives that provides broad skeletal categories to be investigated in the context of an interpretive study. In addition, micro‐ and macro‐level “external” theories are incorporated in a global meso‐level framework to provide a high‐level lens to guide data generation and analysis, fostering the embedment of IAR in wider literatures. Findings – Meso‐level research implies thinking organizationally and behaviourally, and thinking about linkage. By extension, it requires reflecting on the characteristics of the context in which the phenomenon occurs and the actors behave, the nature of the task or decision to perform, and possible links between macro‐ and micro‐factors that help identify “external” theories and frameworks that contribute to understanding the phenomenon. Research limitations/implications – The contribution of the suggested approach is highlighted in the context of financial accounting research. Reflexive accounts on the choice and use of a meso‐level approach are presented, and the issue of appropriate balance between theoretical and empirical material is addressed. Originality/value – Creativity is fostered when cumulative knowledge about a specific phenomenon is embedded in wider meso‐level theoretical perspectives, leading to the discovery of new insights about the topic under study and contributing to the advancement of knowledge.

Journal

Qualitative Research in Accounting & ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 10, 2009

Keywords: Research work; Accounting research; Accounting procedures

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