Concerns about fraud have been of practical significance for as long as written records have been kept, and indeed may be a significant reason for the development of writing and record keeping (Basu and Waymire, 2006 and Ezzamel, 2012). Much of the fraud literature starts with a recitation of infamous accounting (Clikeman, 2009) and corporate scandals and frauds (Punch, 1996), and these often excite public interest and concern. Concern with fraud and white collar crime affects public confidence in institutions as diverse as stock markets, auditors, bankers, corporate executives and government (Sanders & Hamilton, 1997). Various corporate, social and political scandals, fraud and corruption in government, and the fraudulent practices in politics, financial institutions, corporations, NGOs and religious institutions impact the legitimacy of such institutions. It also impacts how economic, political and social life is organized, and our attitudes and policies toward innovation, entrepreneurship and compliance to rules and law (Snider, 2000). Yet we also know that there is much moral ambiguity in life and managers (and accountants) spend much of their life in ‘moral mazes’ (Jackal, 1988), negotiating and making sense of everyday fraud and wrongdoing.
- accounting fraud
- corporate scandals