The search for output
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
This paper builds upon a study of the Swedish Energy Agency’s (SEA) process of defining and accounting for output. New regulations have been implemented regarding the Swedish central agencies’ performance reporting. According to these, the agencies should define their performance independently and decide how to represent their work in their annual report. The single restrictive requirement is that the agencies should focus on their “output” in terms of volume and cost. Based on the study of SEA’s process of defining and accounting for output, this paper suggests that performance reporting can be a challenging task for an organization when no clear performance standards are set by the organization’s superior. Whereas researchers have often written about the challenges of accounting for “outcome”, this paper shows that even the concept of “output” can be problematic and that it cannot be taken for granted. Contrary to many other accounting studies, this paper also suggests that the idea of “becoming visible” through accounting is not necessarily met with resistance among individuals in organizations. On the contrary, it can be regarded as highly desirable.
Output, performance measurement, performance standards
Research subject Business Administration
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-83432OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-83432DiVA: diva2:575722