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Budgeting and beyond: mobilizing the management control system for change and resistance
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Business Administration and Industrial Engineering.
2014 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

While it is almost trite to claim that management control systems (MCS) reflect power and can be difficult to change, existing knowledge is inadequate concerning the specifics of their relation to agents, change and the reproduction of structures. This paper draws on strong structuration theory and aims to provide insights into management accountants’ mobilization of the MCS to accomplish and resist change. The empirical evidence derives from a state-owned, public corporation in the extractive industry and includes interviews with financial officers, documents and observations. The results illustrate how management accountants on group and operations levels mobilize the MCS to change each other’s interpretations and to resist them and how transformation – or attempted transformation – of the MCS interplays with their competing interpretations. Group level enforcers uphold existing interpretations and MCS system features and drive their renewal, while operational level challengers question those interpretations and system features or act in ways that conflict with them. The management accountants on both levels draw on the MCS in this interplay, making it an object of change and a technology for its mediation. These findings suggest a complex and dual role for the MCS in the micro dynamics of debate between different intra-firm interests of agents with different positional identities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Business / Economics - Business studies
Keyword [sv]
Ekonomi - Företagsekonomi
Research subject
Accounting and Control
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-34777Local ID: 90f1b972-079f-4f0f-bb6e-fe2873a31c38OAI: diva2:1008028
Annual Congress of the European Accounting Association : 21/05/2014 - 23/05/2014
Godkänd; 2014; 20140228 (andersn)Available from: 2016-09-30 Created: 2016-09-30Bibliographically approved

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ReferencesLink to record
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