Choices of financial reporting regimes and techniques and underlying decision-making processes : a case study analysis of a port authority

Smith, Julia and Reid, Gavin and HSU, Yu-Lin (2016) Choices of financial reporting regimes and techniques and underlying decision-making processes : a case study analysis of a port authority. In: British Accounting & Finance Association Annual Conference 2016, 2016-03-21 - 2016-03-23, University of Bath. (Unpublished)

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    Abstract

    This paper examines how financial reporting modes are determined within a company, from the perspective of perceived costs and benefits. The modes investigated include financial reporting regimes (e.g. IFRS, UK GAAP) and the financial reporting techniques which support them (e.g. valuing intangibles and investments, treatment of development costs). A stated preference approach is adopted and applied to a fieldwork analysis of the functioning of a large port authority, which was a member of a group and prepared both consolidated and subsidiary accounts. The analysis is largely qualitative, exploring in-depth such matters as key factors in making choices, the decision-making processes behind choices, and the staging of decisions, but underpinned by a quantitative basis, using a metric for determining net benefits of financial reporting regimes and techniques. Our analysis aims to improve our understanding of a company’s choice processes underlying its financial reporting, including its handling of complexity and uncertainty, and its use of innovations in techniques and organisational forms for decision support.