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Framing numbers 'at a distance': intangible performance reporting in a theater
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Business, Accounting.
2011 (English)In: Journal of Human Resource Costing and Accounting, ISSN 1401-338X, Vol. 15, no 4, 260-278 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The aim is to explore how the framing of numbers may be related to the distance between the information provider and information users.

Design/methodology/approach – The design of the paper is a case study, in an organizational situation where there are perceived problems in producing stable inscriptions for reporting to users at a distance. The study focuses on the top management level in a small sized publicly funded theater. The qualitative research design incorporates interviews, observations and document analysis.

Findings – The paper illustrates how knowledge and understanding of the circumstances of measurement form a substantial part of what constitutes ‘distance’ between an accounting user and the referred context. It is argued that the framing of numbers may be utilized as a means to control action at a distance. The findings also imply that the use of measurements regarding intangibles may be perceived as useful for purposes beyond internal management.

Originality/value – The paper contributes in two ways to prior research on accountability relations and accounting as an enabler of action at a distance: it elaborates on what constitutes a distance, and it also adds an emphasis on reciprocal behavior by the provider of information in an accountability relation. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 15, no 4, 260-278 p.
Keyword [en]
Accounting users ‘at a distance’, Framing of numbers, Intangible performance, Measurement
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-62608OAI: diva2:443402
Available from: 2012-03-23 Created: 2011-09-25 Last updated: 2012-03-23Bibliographically approved

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