What has become of the audit explosion? Analysing trends in oversight activities in the Canadian Government

Liston-Heyes, Catherine and Juillet, Luc (2021) What has become of the audit explosion? Analysing trends in oversight activities in the Canadian Government. Public Administration. ISSN 0033-3298

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Abstract

Since the 1980s, many governments expanded their administrative oversight systems, such as auditing and evaluation, in order to improve the efficiency, performance and accountability of their administration. Yet few studies empirically examine this “audit explosion”. Our study investigates its more recent manifestation. Using Canada as an exploratory case, we first assess whether the level of these oversight activities contracted or expanded in the last two decades. We then analyse the contents of 3245 audit reports published between 2000 and 2019 to track changes in the focus of auditing. Results suggest that, while the overall level of administrative oversight is much higher now than in 2000, it grew only in the first decade of the millennium and was confined to internal functions, namely departmental audits and evaluations, as opposed to the country's Supreme Audit Institution. Meanwhile, auditors’ attention to financial matters declined, while their focus on compliance, performance and risk increased.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Management
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2021 07:18
Last Modified: 25 Oct 2021 09:15
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/102352

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