Encyclopedia of Business and Professional Ethics

Living Edition
| Editors: Deborah C Poff, Alex C. Michalos

Accounting Ethics (Including the Profession’s Code of Ethics and Commitment to the Public Interest)

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-23514-1_213-1



Traditionally, the distinguishing features of a profession include its ability to self-regulate and maintain its own ethical standards. Given recurring high-profile corporate failures related to accounting misstatements and/or fraudulent reporting, unethical practice by accounting professionals has become an issue of considerable concern, with significant societal consequences. This entry provides an overview of how the accounting profession addresses ethical issues through the promulgation of its code of ethics, which includes some consideration of the “public interest.”

As of December 2016, the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) represented close to 3 million professional accountants in over 130 different jurisdictions, through over 175 professional accounting bodies that are members or associates of IFAC (2017). Through several dedicated standards boards, IFAC develops standards for its...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Accountancy, QUT Business SchoolQueensland University of TechnologyBrisbaneAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Andrew West
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Accountancy, QUT Business SchoolQueensland University of TechnologyBrisbaneAustralia