This paper examines certain interactions between American government and business which resulted in important innovations in the areas of budgeting and cost accounting early in the twentieth century. The evidence suggests that budgeting methods were initially developed by municipal reformers of the Progressive era and were subsequently adapted by business for planning and control purposes. In like fashion, standard costing and variance analysis were significant cost accounting techniques born to an industrial environment which came to contribute markedly to a continuing improvement of governmental budgeting procedures.

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