This commentary reflects the views of a panel of six experts tasked with writing an essay on the most incorrect beliefs of accounting experts.1 The title provides ample motivation for this discussion—to document the views of some thought leaders in accounting research on a seldom-debated and mostly ignored issue—incorrect beliefs. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Devil's Advocate is a canon lawyer appointed to gather evidence and argue against the canonization or beatification of a proposed saint.2 In skeptically questioning the motives and deeds of religious heroes and heroines who are thought worthy of exalted status, the Devil's Advocate takes an unpopular but principled stand against potential fraud. Similarly, I expected the panelists to identify certain incorrect beliefs in accounting, especially those whose validity derives more from the authority of their promoters than from empirical evidence. Some have expressed the view that U.S. accounting academics cling too much...
Devil's Advocate: The Most Incorrect Beliefs of Accounting Experts
This commentary article summarizes the views expressed by six panelists in a discussion held August 7, 2012 at the American Accounting Association Annual Meeting, Washington, DC. As chair of this panel, I thank Ray Ball, Philip Brown, Pingyang Gao, Paul Madsen, Joni Young, and Jerry Zimmerman for agreeing to participate, and more importantly, to write up their comments. I thank Paul Griffin (editor) and two anonymous referees for thoughtful suggestions that have improved all the commentaries.
The video presentation can be accessed by clicking the link in Appendix A.
Sudipta Basu; Devil's Advocate: The Most Incorrect Beliefs of Accounting Experts. Accounting Horizons 1 December 2013; 27 (4): 841–846. https://doi.org/10.2308/acch-10364
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