Skip to main content

We Have Never Been Secular: Religious Identities, Duties, and Ethics in Audit Practice

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Notes

  1. Appeals to ‘good character’ are also made, but these are largely limited to internal discourses (Neu et al. 2003).

  2. Comte, Durkheim, Weber, and Marx each had their own version of this thesis (Beckford & Demerath, 2007).

  3. One such myth being that the ‘secular politics’ of modernity had its origin in the contractual settlement arising from the peace of Westphalia. On how this myth was dependent upon discursive notions (e.g., ‘the nation,’ ‘the people’) see Kratochwil (2013).

  4. An example of a celebrity with messianic qualities is musician Bob Marley, who rose meteorically from poor rural livery boy to global symbol of peace and unity.

  5. Consider that the 55-hectare Dubai Mall, the ‘world’s largest shopping center,’ now attracts roughly 30 times as many visitors as the Meccan Hajj (60 million vs. 2 million visitors per year, respectively).

  6. Indicative of this commercial strain of religiosity are books such as Sacred Economics (cf., Eisenstein 2011), Sacred Commerce (cf., Englehart and Engelhart 2008), and Sacred Business (Wright 2014).

  7. Or to paraphrase Camus, if God is dead, his memory is still very much alive (in Cirillo 2010, p. 233).

  8. Self-proclaimed because the faith that these individuals have in science remains a ‘faith in ultimate values.’

  9. Like many sociological commentators (O’Toole 2003, p. 150), our understanding of religion draws on the work of Durkheim, Weber and, given his view that capitalism is a religion, Benjamin (Sørensen, 2012; Murtola 2012).

  10. The suicide bomber being the quintessential example of one who sacrifices in the name of a transcendent.

  11. Through news reports, government reports, the business press, the strategic plans of universities, and more, the economy has come to preoccupy our attention. Yet, it is difficult to pinpoint exactly what the economy is, and this is because it relates to a very wide set of cultural, technical, legal, political, geographic, and historic processes of production, distribution, trade and consumption. Indeed, these activities are so numerous, broad, and complex that one really has to have a lot of faith to believe someone who says the economy is ‘growing,’ ‘shrinking,’ ‘healthy,’ or ‘sick.’

  12. It was at this later date that a third set of auditors, Canada’s Office of the Auditor General, entered the picture (for a discussion, see Free and Radcliffe 2009).

  13. We thank one of the paper’s reviewers for alerting us to this important watchdog role.

  14. The parallel that exists between the terms ‘god’ and ‘principal’ should be apparent, given the latter’s connotations of ‘chief,’ ‘head,’ ‘ruler,’ or ‘governor’.

  15. Given accounting’s historic legal foundation (Lee 2013), this literature is relevant.

  16. Griffith (2005) conceptualizes the duty of good faith as a ‘thaumatrope,’ or rhetorical device that enables its users to alternate between arguments related to a contractual party’s duty of care and her or his duty of loyalty. It would be interesting to see if practicing auditors similarly view this duty in a thaumatropic manner.

  17. These include Britain and its ex-colonies (e.g., Australia, Canada, India, Hong Kong), the United States, and many other countries.

  18. Hood’s analysis was focused on public sector organizations, though we think private sector organizations would have a similar focus.

  19. Regarding the beneficence of lawmakers, the United States 2006 Military Commissions Act may do more to protect US government defendants from being prosecuted for war crimes than it does to uphold detainee rights (Dorf 2007).

  20. Canada’s Supreme Court recently made ‘good faith’ a mandatory rather than discretionary principle of contract law, further underlining the importance of this notion (see Bhasin v. Hrynew, 2014 SCC 71, [2014] 3 S.C.R. 494).

  21. The notions ‘sacrifice’ and ‘the sacred’ are intimately related, the former being derived from the Latin term sacer, or ‘sacred,’ ‘holy,’ or ‘consecrated’ (cf., latin-dictionary.net 2015).

  22. In contrast to empirical accounting research, truth remains a key concept in Christianity and many other faiths.

  23. This change of focus parallels the shift that occurred in the field of physics roughly 80 years earlier.

  24. This is an admittedly crude picture of what is a very diverse field. Nonetheless, there are some strong ‘family resemblances’ amongst the various approaches (cf., Chua 1986; Jönsson and Macintosh 1997).

  25. There seems to be strong implicit belief among academics that their research is useful and of interest to practitioners. That being said, we appreciate that some conduct research purely out of curiosity or simply because they must (on the motivations of accounting researchers, see Everett 2007).

  26. Triadic structures in intellectual thought have acquired near-religious legitimacy, “as if the number of the Three were the remedy in the case of those who were in error as to the One” (Connolly 2008, p. 126).

  27. Émile Durkheim, a preeminent theorist of the sacred, was, similarly, ‘a man of faith,’ being devoted to ‘de-particularized knowledge and truth’ (Bourdieu 2014, p. 39).

  28. In the case of the environment, political struggle takes place over its imputed purpose (i.e., ‘economic resource,’ ‘spiritual amenity,’ ‘self-regulating, life-support system,’ etc.). On nature’s connection to the sacred, see Ferguson and Tamburello (2015).

  29. Regarding faith in the sacred and the sacrifices made on its behalf, Taussig’s (1999, p. 146) conceptualization of the act of sacrifice as the inverse of the act of sacrilege and desecration is particularly relevant.

References

  • Ahrens, T., & Dent, J. F. (1998). Accounting and organizations: Realizing the richness of field research. Journal of management accounting research, 10, 1–39.

    Google Scholar 

  • Allegaert, C., & Tinkelman, D. (1999). Reconsidering the lack of duty defense to state auditor negligence claims. Journal of Corporation Law, 25, 489–510.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ammerman, N. T. (2013). Spiritual but not religious? Beyond binary choices in the study of religion. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 52(2), 258–278.

    Google Scholar 

  • Antle, R. (1982). The auditor as an economic agent. Journal of Accounting Research, 20(2), 503–527. Part II.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ariely, D. (2008). Predictably irrational. New York: HarperCollins.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bauman, Z. (1997). Postmodernity and its discontents. Cambridge: Polity Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bayou, M. E., Reinstein, A., & Williams, P. (2011). To tell the truth: A discussion of issues concerning truth and ethics in accounting. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 36, 109–124.

    Google Scholar 

  • Beckford, J. A., & Demerath, J. (Eds.). (2007). The SAGE handbook of the sociology of religion. London: Sage.

    Google Scholar 

  • Belk, R. W., Wallendorf, M., & Sherry, J. F. (1989). The sacred and the profane in consumer behavior: Theodicy on the odyssey. Journal of consumer research, 16(1), 1–38.

    Google Scholar 

  • Berger, P. (1999). The desecularization of the world: A global overview. In P. Berger (Ed.), The desecularization of the world: Resurgent religion and world politics (pp. 1–18). Washington, DC: Ethics and Public Policy Center.

    Google Scholar 

  • Berggren, N. (2003). The benefits of economic freedom: A survey. The Independent Review, 8(2), 193–211.

    Google Scholar 

  • Beyer, P. (2007). Globalization and glocalization. In J. A. Beckford & J. Demerath (Eds.), The SAGE handbook of the sociology of religion (pp. 98–117). London: Sage.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bigoni, M., Galiardo, E. D., & Funnell, W. (2013). Rethinking the sacred and secular divide. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 26(4), 567–594.

    Google Scholar 

  • Billings, D. B. (1990). Religion as opposition: A Gramscian analysis. American Journal of Sociology, 96(1), 1–31.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bourdieu, P. (1998). Practical reason: On the theory of action. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bourdieu, P. (2014). On the state: Lectures at the Collège de France, 19891992. Lenoir, R., Poupeau, F., & Rivière, M. C. (eds.). London: Polity.

  • Bowler, K. (2013). Blessed: A history of the American prosperity gospel. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Boyce, G. (2013). Professionalism, the public interest, and social accounting. In Accounting for the public interest (pp. 115–139). Dordrecht: Springer.

  • Brivot, M., Cho, C. H., & Kuhn, J. R. (2015). Marketing or parrhesia: A longitudinal study of AICPA’s shifting languages in times of turbulence. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 31, 23–43.

    Google Scholar 

  • Broadbent, J. (2002). Critical accounting research: A view from England. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 13(4), 433–449.

    Google Scholar 

  • Busco, C., Riccaboni, A., & Scapens, R. W. (2006). Trust for accounting and accounting for trust. Management Accounting Research., 17(1), 11–41.

    Google Scholar 

  • Caldwell, C., Davis, B., & Devine, J. A. (2009). Trust, faith, and betrayal: Insights from management for the wise believer. Journal of Business Ethics, 84, 103–114.

    Google Scholar 

  • Calvin, J. (1545). Letter to the Queen of Navarre. Letters of John Calvin. Bonnet, J. (trans.). London: Presbyterian Board of Publication.

  • Calvin, J. (1585). Commentary upon the acts of the apostles V. 1. Calvin Translation Society.

  • Calvin, J. (2013). Commentary on the Prophet Isaiah, Vol. 1. Calvin’s Complete Commentary on the Bible. Harrington, Delaware: Delmarva Publications.

  • Canning, M., & O’Dwyer, B. (2001). Professional accounting bodies’ disciplinary procedures: Accountable, transparent and in the public interest? European Accounting Review, 10(4), 725–749.

    Google Scholar 

  • Canning, M., & O’Dwyer, B. (2003). A critique of the descriptive power of the private interest model of professional accounting ethics. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 16(2), 159–185.

    Google Scholar 

  • Carmona, S., & Ezzamel, M. (2006). Accounting and religion: A historical perspective. Accounting History, 11(2), 117–127.

    Google Scholar 

  • Carnegie, G. D., & Napier, C. J. (2010). Traditional accountants and business professionals: Portraying the accounting profession after Enron. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 35, 360–376.

    Google Scholar 

  • Chambers, R. J. (1966). A matter of principle. The Accounting Review, 41(3), 443–457.

    Google Scholar 

  • Chua, W. F. (1986). Radical developments in accounting thought. Accounting Review, 61(4), 601–632.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cirillo, R. (2010). Imagining humane realism: Moving from sacred secularism toward a pragmatic theory of human rights. Political Theology, 11(2), 227–245.

    Google Scholar 

  • Citron, D. B. (2003). The UK’s framework approach to auditor independence and the commercialization of the accounting profession. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 16(2), 244–274.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ciulla, J. B. (2009). Leadership and the ethics of care. Journal of Business Ethics, 88(1), 3–4.

    Google Scholar 

  • U.S. vs. Arthur Young & Co., 465 U.S. 805 1984.

  • Coffee, J. C. (2002). Understanding Enron: It’s about the gatekeepers, stupid. Columbia Law School Working Paper, No. 207, pp. 1403–1420.

  • Gomery Commission. (2005). The Gomery commission phase I report, who is responsible? Fact finding report. Ottawa: Commission of Inquiry into the Sponsorship Program and Advertising Activities.

    Google Scholar 

  • Connolly, W. E. (2008). Capitalism and Christianity, American style. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Connolly, W. E. (2011). A world of becoming. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cooper, D. J., & Robson, K. (2006). Accounting, professions and regulation: Locating the sites of professionalization. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 31(4–5), 415–444.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cronon, W. (1996). Uncommon ground: Rethinking the human place in nature. London: WW Norton & Company.

    Google Scholar 

  • Davenport, L., & Dellaportas, S. (2009). Interpreting the public interest: A survey of professional accountants. Australian Accounting Review, 19(1), 11–23.

    Google Scholar 

  • Davis, J. L., Le, B., & Coy, A. E. (2011). Building a model of commitment to the natural environment to predict ecological behavior and willingness to sacrifice. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 31(3), 257–265.

    Google Scholar 

  • Davison, J. (2004). Sacred vestiges in financial reporting: Mythical readings guided by Mircea Eliade. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 17(3), 476–497.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dellaportas, S., & Davenport, L. (2008). Reflections on the public interest in accounting. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 19, 1080–1098.

    Google Scholar 

  • Demerath, N. (2003). Secularization extended: From religious “myth” to cultural commonplace. In R. K. Fenn (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to sociology of religion (pp. 211–228). London: Blackwell.

    Google Scholar 

  • Derks, H. (2008). Religion, capitalism and the rise of double-entry bookkeeping. Accounting, Business & Financial History, 18(2), 187–213.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dimnik, T., & Felton, S. (2006). Accountant stereotypes in movies distributed in North America in the twentieth century. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 31(2), 129–155.

    Google Scholar 

  • Donleavy, G. D. (2008). No man’s land: Exploring the space between Gilligan and Kohlberg. Journal of Business Ethics, 80(4), 807–822.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dorf, M. C. (2007). The Orwellian Military Commissions Act of 2006. Journal of International Criminal Justice, 5(1), 10–18.

    Google Scholar 

  • Eagleton, T. (2011). Trouble with Strangers: A tudy of ethics. London: John Wiley & Sons.

    Google Scholar 

  • Edwards, J. R., & Walker, S. P. (2010). Lifestyle, status and occupational differentiation in Victorian accountancy. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 32, 2–22.

    Google Scholar 

  • Eisenberg, M. A. (1989). The duty of care of corporate directors and officers. University of Pittsburgh Law Review, 51, 945–972.

    Google Scholar 

  • Eisenstein, C. (2011). Sacred economics: Money, gift, and society in the age of transition. North Atlantic Books.

  • Englehart, M., & Englehart, T. (2008). Sacred commerce: Business as a path of awakening. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books.

    Google Scholar 

  • Evans, L., & Fraser, I. (2012). The accountant’s social background and stereotype in popular culture: The novels of Alexander Clark Smith. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 25(6), 964–1000.

    Google Scholar 

  • Everett, J. (2007). Ethics education and the role of the symbolic market. Journal of Business Ethics, 76(3), 253–267.

    Google Scholar 

  • Everett, J., Green, D., & Neu, D. (2005). Independence, objectivity and the Canadian CA profession. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 16(4), 415–440.

    Google Scholar 

  • Everett, J., Neu, D. & Rahaman, A. S. (2007). Accounting and the global fight against corruption. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 32(6), 513–542.

  • Farber, D. (2005). Restoring trust after fraud: Does corporate governance matter? Accounting Review, 80(2), 539–561.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fenn, R. K. (2003). Editorial commentary: Religion and the secular; the sacred and the profane: The scope of the argument. In R. K. Fenn (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to sociology of religion (pp. 1–22). London: Blackwell.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ferguson, T. W., & Tamburello, J. A. (2015). The natural environment as a spiritual resource: A theory of regional variation in religious adherence. Sociology of Religion, 76(3), 295–314.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ferraro, F., Pfeffer, J., & Sutton, R. I. (2005). Economics language and assumptions: How theories can become self-fulfilling. Academy of Management Review, 30(1), 8–24.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fleischman, R. K., & Radcliffe, V. S. (2005). The roaring nineties: Accounting history comes of age. Accounting Historians Journal, 32(1), 61–109.

    Google Scholar 

  • Foucault, M. (1978). The history of sexuality, Vol. 1: An introduction. New York, NY: Vintage.

  • Free, C., & Radcliffe, V. (2009). Accountability in crisis: The sponsorship scandal and the Office of the Comptroller General in Canada. Journal of Business Ethics, 84(2), 189–208.

    Google Scholar 

  • Friedland, R. (2009). The endless fields of Pierre Bourdieu. Organization, 16(6), 887–917.

    Google Scholar 

  • Garrison (2013)—cited on p 37

  • Gendron, Y., Cooper, D. J., & Townley, B. (2001). In the name of accountability: State auditing, independence, and new public management. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 14(3), 278–310.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gendron, Y., & Spira, L. (2010). Confirm citation on p. 16. Identity narratives under threat: A study of former members of Arthur Andersen. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 35, 275–300.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gendron, Y., Suddaby, R., & Lam, L. (2006). An examination of the ethical commitment of professional accountants to auditor independence. Journal of Business Ethics, 64(2), 169–193.

    Google Scholar 

  • Goddard, A. (2002). Development of the accounting profession and practices in the public sector—A hegemonic analysis. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 15(5), 655–688.

    Google Scholar 

  • Goelzer, D. L. (2005). Sarbanes-Oxley and the post-Enron environment: Auditor oversight. Retrieved October, 2015: http://pcaobus.org/News/Speech/Pages/08022005_GoelzerSOXAuditorOversight.aspx).

  • Grant, C. (2002). Whistle blowers: Saints of secular culture. Journal of Business Ethics, 39(4), 391–399.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gray, R. (2010). Is accounting for sustainability actually accounting for sustainability… and how would we know? An exploration of narratives of organisations and the planet. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 35(1), 47–62.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gray, R., Dillard, J., & Spence, C. (2009). Social accounting research as if the world matters: An essay in Postalgia and a new absurdism. Public Management Review, 11(5), 545–573.

    Google Scholar 

  • Griffith, S. J. (2005). Good faith business judgment: A theory of rhetoric in corporate law jurisprudence. Duke Law Journal, 55(1), 1–78.

    Google Scholar 

  • Griffith-Jones, J. (2012). Watchdog not bloodhound. Retrieved August 2015: http://economia.icaew.com/people/watchdog-not-bloodhound

  • Guénin-Paracini, H., & Gentron, Y. (2010). Auditors as modern pharmakoi: Legitimacy paradoxes and the production of economic order. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 21, 134–158.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gunz, S., & McCutcheon, J. (1991). Some unresolved ethical issues in auditing. Journal of Business Ethics, 10(10), 777–785.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hanlon, G. (2004). Institutional forms and organizational structures: Homology, trust and reputational capital in professional service firms. Organization, 11(2), 187–210.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harari, Y. N. (2015). Homo Deus: A brief history of tomorrow. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hardy, L., & Ballis, H. (2005). Does one size fit all? The sacred and secular divide revisited with insights from Niebuhr’s typology of social action. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 18(2), 238–254.

    Google Scholar 

  • Held, V. (2006). The ethics of care: Personal, political, and global. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hood, C. (2002). The risk game and the blame game. Government and Opposition, 37(1), 15–37.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hood, C. (2007). What happens when transparency meets blame-avoidance? Public Management Review, 9(2), 191–210.

    Google Scholar 

  • Houghton, K. A., & Jubb, C. A. (2003). The market for financial report audits: Regulation of and competition for auditor independence. Law & Policy, 25(3), 300–321.

    Google Scholar 

  • Humphrey, C., Turley, S., & Moizer, P. (1993). Protecting against detection: The case of auditors and fraud? Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 6(1), 39–62.

    Google Scholar 

  • Humphry, C., & Owen, D. (2000). Debating the “power” of audit. International Journal of Auditing, 4, 29–50.

    Google Scholar 

  • ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales). (2011). Dialogue in corporate governance: New challenges. London: ICAEW.

    Google Scholar 

  • ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales). (2012). Retrieved September 2015: http://www.icaew.com/en/technical/audit-and-assurance/faculty/audit-and-beyond/audit-and-beyond-2012/june-2012/from-perception-to-perfection

  • IIA (Institute of Internal Auditors). (2015). Retrieved July 2015: https://www.iia.org.au/learnDevel/auditing-contracts

  • Jackall, R. (1991). Moral mazes: Bureaucracy and managerial work, ethics at work. Boston: Harvard Business Review.

    Google Scholar 

  • Jacobs, K. (2005). The sacred and the secular: Examining the role of accounting in the religious context. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 18(2), 189–210.

    Google Scholar 

  • Jacobs, K., & Walker, S. P. (2004). Accounting and accountability in the Iona Community. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 17(3), 361–381.

    Google Scholar 

  • Jeong, S., & Burton, O. (2015). 3rd person spirituality: Role of spiritual agents in business. Paper presented at the 2015 Academy of Management Annual Meeting, pp 1–30.

  • Jönsson, S., & Macintosh, N. B. (1997). CATS, RATS, and EARS: Making the case for ethnographic accounting research. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 22(3), 367–386.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kahn, P. W. (2008). Sacred violence: Torture, terror, and sovereignty. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kim, S. H. (2008). Gatekeepers inside out. Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics, 21, 1–53.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kraakman, R. H. (1986). Gatekeepers: The anatomy of a third-party enforcement strategy. Journal of Law Economics and Organization, 2(1), 53–104.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kratochwil, F. (2013). Politics, law, and the sacred: A conceptual analysis. Journal of International Relations and Development, 16(1), 1–24.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kreander, N., McPhail, K., & Molyneaux, D. (2004). God’s fund managers: A critical study of stock market investment practices of the Church of England and UK Methodists. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 17(3), 408–441. Confirm this reference with citation on p. 36

  • Kruse, K. (2015). One nation under god: How corporate America invented Christian America. New York, NY: Basic Books.

    Google Scholar 

  • Latin-dictionary.net. (2015). Retrieved August 2015: http://www.latin-dictionary.net/definition/33851/sacer-sacra-sacrum

  • Latour, B. (2012). We have never been modern. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Laughlin, R. C. (1988). Accounting in its social context: An analysis of the accounting systems of the Church of England. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 1(2), 19–42.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (1995). The professionalization of accountancy: A history of protecting the public interest in a self-interested way. Accounting Auditing & Accountability Journal, 8(4), 48–69.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (1996). Identifying the founding fathers of public accountancy: The formation of The Society of Accountants in Edinburgh. Accounting, Business & Financial History, 6(3), 315–335.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2000). A social network analysis of the founders of institutionalized public accountancy. Accounting Historians Journal, 27(2), 1–48.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2004). Economic class, social status, and early Scottish chartered accountants. Accounting Historians Journal, 31(2), 27–52.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2006). Going where no accounting historian has gone before. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 19(6), 918–944.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2010). Social closure and the incorporation of the Society of Accountants in Edinburgh in 1854. Accounting, Business & Financial History, 20(1), 1–22.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2013). Reflections on the origins of modern accounting. Accounting History, 18(2), 141–161.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lee, T. (2014). Assimilation and Americanisation of the progressive era: Price, Waterhouse & Company in the US, 1890-1914. Accounting History, 19(1–2), 13–30.

    Google Scholar 

  • Liedtka, J. M. (1996). Feminist morality and competitive reality: A role for an ethic of care? Business Ethics Quarterly, 6(2), 179–200.

    Google Scholar 

  • Loughran, M. (2010). Auditing for dummies. Hoboken: Wiley.

    Google Scholar 

  • Luban, D. (1999). Contrived ignorance. Georgetown Law Journal, 87(4), 957–980.

    Google Scholar 

  • Macintosh, N. B., Shearer, T., & Riccaboni, A. (2009). A Levinasian ethics critique of the role of management and control systems by large global corporations: The General Electric/Nuovo Pignone example. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 20(6), 751–761.

    Google Scholar 

  • Madi, A. (2015). Finding meaning at work: When and why do people search for existential meaning at work. Paper presented at the 2015 Academy of Management Annual Meeting.

  • Malsch, B., & Gendron, Y. (2013). Re-theorizing change: Institutional experimentation and the struggle for domination in the field of public accounting. Journal of Management Studies, 50(5), 870–899.

    Google Scholar 

  • Martin, D. (2005). On secularization: Towards a revised general theory. Burlington, VT: Ashgate Publishing.

    Google Scholar 

  • Martin, D. (2011). The future of Christianity: Reflections on violence and democracy, religion and secularization. Burlington, VT: Ashgate Publishing.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mautz, R. K., & Sharaf, H. A. (1961). The philosophy of auditing. American Accounting Association. Monograph No. 6. Sarasota, FL: American Accounting Association.

  • McKim, D. K. (2004). The Cambridge Companion to John Calvin. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • McPhail, K., Gorringe, T., & Gray, R. (2004). Accounting and theology, an introduction: Initiating a dialogue between immediacy and eternity. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 17(3), 320–326.

    Google Scholar 

  • Milne, M., Guthrie, J., & Parker, L. (2008). Into the light and engagement. Accounting Auditing & Accountability Journal, 21(2), 117–128.

    Google Scholar 

  • Milne, M. J., Kearins, K., & Walton, S. (2006). Creating adventures in wonderland: The journey metaphor and environmental sustainability. Organization, 13(6), 801–839.

    Google Scholar 

  • Moore, G., Slack, R., & Gibbon, J. (2008). Criteria for responsible business practice in SMEs: An exploratory case of U.K. fair trade organisations. Journal of Business Ethics, 89(2), 173–188.

    Google Scholar 

  • Moore, D. A., Tetlock, P. E., Tanlu, L., & Bazerman, M. (2006). Conflicts of interest and the case of auditor independence: Moral seduction and strategic issue recycling. Academy of Management Review, 31(1), 10–29.

    Google Scholar 

  • Morgenstern, R. D., Pizer, W. A., & Shih, J. (2002). Jobs versus the environment: An industry-level perspective. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 43(3), 412–436.

    Google Scholar 

  • Murtola, A. (2012). Materialist theology and anti-capitalist resistance, or “What would Jesus buy?”. Organization, 19(3), 325–344.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mutch, A. (2012). Theology, accountability and management: Exploring the contributions of Scottish Presbyterianism. Organization, 19(3), 363–379.

    Google Scholar 

  • Napier, C. J. (1998). Intersections of law and accountancy: Unlimited auditor liability in the United Kingdom. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 23(1), 105–128.

    Google Scholar 

  • Nelson, R. H. (2001). Economics as religion: From Samuelson to Chicago and Beyond. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Neu, D., Everett, J., & Rahaman, A. S. (2013). Internal auditing and corruption within government: The case of the Canadian Sponsorship Program. Contemporary Accounting Research, 30(1), 1223–1250.

    Google Scholar 

  • Neu, D., Friesen, C., & Everett, J. (2003). The changing internal market for ethical discourses in the Canadian CA profession. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 16(1), 70–103.

    Google Scholar 

  • Nielson, D. A. (2003). Transformations of Society and the Sacred in Durkheim’s Religious Sociology. In R. K. Fenn (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to sociology of religion (pp. 120–132). London: Blackwell.

    Google Scholar 

  • Nietzsche, F. (1974). The gay science. (W. Kaufmann Trans.). New York: Random House.

  • Nurnberg, H. (2000). Biblical basis of forty-year goodwill amortization. Accounting Historians Journal, 27(2), 165–176.

    Google Scholar 

  • O’Toole, R. (2003). Classics in the sociology of religion: An ambiguous legacy. In R. K. Fenn (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to sociology of religion (pp. 133–160). London: Blackwell.

    Google Scholar 

  • Office of the Auditor General of Canada. (2003). Government-wide audit of sponsorship, advertising, and public opinion research. Ottawa: Office of the Auditor General of Canada.

    Google Scholar 

  • Onfray, M. (2005). Traité d’athéologie. Paris: Grasset.

    Google Scholar 

  • Parker, L. D. (1994). Professional accounting body ethics: In search of the private interest. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 19(6), 507–525.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pewforum. (2015). Retrieved July 2015: http://www.pewforum.org/2011/12/19/global-christianity-movements-and-denominations/

  • Picard, C. (2016). The marketization of accountancy. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 34, 79–97.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pollitt, C., & Summa, H. (1997). Reflexive watchdogs? How supreme audit institutions account for themselves. Public Administration, 75(2), 313–336.

    Google Scholar 

  • Powell, B., & Zwolinski, M. (2012). The ethical and economic case against sweatshop labor: A critical assessment. Journal of Business Ethics, 107(4), 449–472.

    Google Scholar 

  • Power, M. (1998). Auditor liability in context. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 23(1), 77–79.

    Google Scholar 

  • Power, M. (2003a). Auditing and the production of legitimacy. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 28, 379–394.

    Google Scholar 

  • Power, M. (2003b). Evaluating the audit explosion. Law & Policy, 25(3), 185–202. which ones on pgs. 12, 29??

  • Power, M. (2004). The risk management of everything: Rethinking the politics of uncertainty. London: Demos.

    Google Scholar 

  • Power, M. (2013). The apparatus of fraud risk. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 38(6–7), 525–543.

    Google Scholar 

  • Preston, A. M., Cooper, D. J., Scarbrough, D. P., & Chilton, R. C. (1995). Changes in the code of ethics of the US accounting profession, 1917 and 1988: The continual quest for legitimation. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 20(6), 507–546.

    Google Scholar 

  • Quattrone, P. (2004). Accounting for god: Accounting and accountability practices in the Society of Jesus (Italy, XVI–XVII centuries). Accounting, Organizations and Society, 29(7), 647–683.

    Google Scholar 

  • Radcliffe, V. S. (1999). Knowing efficiency: The enactment of efficiency in efficiency auditing. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 24(4), 333–362.

    Google Scholar 

  • Radcliffe, V. S. (2008). Public secrecy in auditing: What government auditors cannot know. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 19(1), 99–126.

    Google Scholar 

  • Radcliffe, V. S. (2011). Public secrecy in government auditing revisited. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 22(7), 722–732.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ravlic, T. (2004). Watchdog on the prowl. CPA Australia Abstracts.

  • Reiter, S. A. (1996). The Kohlberg-Gilligan controversy: Lessons for accounting ethics education. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 7, 33–54.

    Google Scholar 

  • Reiter, S. A., & Williams, P. F. (2004). The philosophy and rhetoric of auditor independence concepts. Business Ethics Quarterly, 14(3), 355–376.

    Google Scholar 

  • Riahi-Belkaoui, A. (2004). Accounting theory. Andover: Cengage Learning EMEA.

    Google Scholar 

  • Roberts, J. (1991). The possibilities of accountability. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 16(4), 355–368.

    Google Scholar 

  • Roberts, J. (2001). Corporate governance and the ethics of narcissus. Business Ethics Quarterly, 11(1), 109–127.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rogers, R. K., Dillard, J., & Yuthas, K. (2005). The accounting profession: Substantive change and/or image management. Journal of Business Ethics, 58, 159–176.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rosanas, J. M., & Velilla, M. (2003). Loyalty and trust as the ethical bases of organizations. Journal of Business Ethics, 44(1), 49–59.

    Google Scholar 

  • Schwarcz, S. L. (2006). Financial information failure and lawyer responsibility. Journal of Corporation Law, 31(4), 1–27.

    Google Scholar 

  • Shaub, M. K., & Braun, R. L. (2014). Call of duty: A framework for auditors’ ethical decisions. Accounting for the Public Interest, 4, 3–25.

    Google Scholar 

  • Shearer, T. (2002). Ethics and accountability: From the for-itself to the for-the-other. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 27(6), 541–573.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sikka, P. (2009). Financial crisis and the silence of the auditors. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 34(6), 868–873.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sikka, P., & Hampton, M. P. (2005). The role of accountancy firms in tax avoidance: Some evidence and issues. Accounting Forum, 29(3), 325–343.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sikka, P., & Willmott, H. (1995). The power of ‘independence’: Defending and extending the jurisdiction of accounting in the United Kingdom. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 20(6), 547–581.

    Google Scholar 

  • Simola, S. K. (2007). The pragmatics of care in sustainable global enterprise. Journal of Business Ethics, 74(2), 131–147.

    Google Scholar 

  • Simon, H. A. (1982). Models of bounded rationality: Empirically grounded economic reason (Vol. 3). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Simon, W. H. (2005). Wrongs of ignorance and ambiguity: Lawyer responsibility for collective misconduct. Yale Journal on Regulation, 22(1), 1–27.

    Google Scholar 

  • Skærbæk, P., & Christensen, M. (2015). Auditing and the Purification of Blame. Contemporary Accounting Research, 32(3), 1263–1284.

    Google Scholar 

  • Smith-Lacroix, J., Durocher, S., & Gendron, Y. (2012). The erosion of jurisdiction: Auditing in a market value accounting regime. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 21, 36–53.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sørensen, B. M., Spoelstra, S., Höpfl, H., & Crichley, S. (2012). Theology and organization. Organization, 19(3), 267–279.

    Google Scholar 

  • Spence, C., & Carter, C. (2014). An exploration of the professional habitus in the Big 4 accounting firms. Work, Employment & Society, 28(6), 946–962.

    Google Scholar 

  • Suddaby, R., Gendron, Y., & Lam, H. (2009). The organizational context of professionalism in accounting. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 34, 409–427.

    Google Scholar 

  • Taussig, M. T. (1999). Defacement: Public secrecy and the labor of the negative (p. 1999). Redwood, CA: Stanford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tawney, R. H. (1926). Religion and the rise of capitalism. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers.

    Google Scholar 

  • Taylor, M. C. (1987). Erring: A postmodern A/theology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Taylor, C. (2007). A secular age. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Taylor, M. C. (2008). After god. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Thaler, R. H. (1994). Quasi rational economics. New York, NY: Russell Sage Foundation.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tregidga, H., Milne, M., & Kearins, K. (forthcoming). Ramping up resistance: Corporate sustainable development and academic research. Business & Society.

  • Tremblay, M., & Gendron, Y. (2011). Governance prescriptions under trial: On the interplay between the of resistance and compliance in audit committees. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 22, 259–272.

    Google Scholar 

  • Turner, E. (2012). Going concern: When should the watchdog bark? CPA Canada. Retrieved August 2015: https://www.cpacanada.ca/en/connecting-and-news/blogs/audit-blog/2012/July/going-concern-when-should-the-watchdog-bark.

  • USGAO (United States Government Accountability Office). (2007). Government Auditing Standards.

  • USGAO (United States Government Accountability Office). (2011). Government Auditing Standards.

  • Varga, I. (1995). Modernity or pseudo-modernity? Secularization or pseudo-secularization? Reflections on East-Central Europe. In R. H. Roberts (Ed.), Religion and the transformation of capitalism: Comparative approaches (pp. 231–247). London: Routledge.

    Google Scholar 

  • Walker, S. P. (1991). The defense of professional monopoly: Scottish chartered accountants and “Satellites in the accountancy firmament” 1854–1914. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 16(3), 257–283.

    Google Scholar 

  • Walker, S. P. (2008). Innovation, convergence, and argument without end in accounting history. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 21(2), 296–322.

    Google Scholar 

  • West, B. P. (1996). The professionalization of accounting: A review of recent historical research and its implications. Accounting History, 1(1), 77–102.

    Google Scholar 

  • White, T. I. (1992). Business, ethics, and Carol Gilligan’s ‘two voices’. Business Ethics Quarterly, 2(1), 51–62.

    Google Scholar 

  • Whitley, R. (1986). The transformation of business finance into financial economics: The roles of academic expansion and changes in US capital markets. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 11(2), 171–192.

    Google Scholar 

  • Whyte, W. H. (1956). The organization man. Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor Books.

    Google Scholar 

  • Williams, P. F., & Rodgers, J. L. (1995). The accounting review and the production of accounting knowledge. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 6(3), 263–287.

    Google Scholar 

  • Wright, L. (2014). Sacred business: Taking principles from the boardroom into your marriage. Heart of the Matter Publications.

Download references

Acknowledgements

The authors gratefully acknowledge the helpful comments provided by attendees of the Pacioli Society Meeting at the University of Sydney, Marion Brivot, and the anonymous reviewers of this paper.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Jeff Everett.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Everett, J., Friesen, C., Neu, D. et al. We Have Never Been Secular: Religious Identities, Duties, and Ethics in Audit Practice. J Bus Ethics 153, 1121–1142 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-016-3426-x

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-016-3426-x

Keywords

  • Sacred Identity
  • External Gatekeepers
  • Cowboy Capitalism
  • Willful Ignorance
  • Internal Gatekeepers