A cultural political economy of management accounting controls: a case study of a textile Mill in a traditional Sinhalese village

Wickramasinghe, Danture and Hopper, Trevor (2005) A cultural political economy of management accounting controls: a case study of a textile Mill in a traditional Sinhalese village. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 16 (4). pp. 473-503. ISSN 1045-2354

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Abstract

A cultural political economy of management accounting, drawing from political and economic history, modes of production (MOP) theory in development studies, and cultural anthropology is used here to inform a longitudinal case study of management control in a textile Mill in a traditional Sinhalese village in Sri Lanka. Successive attempts to impose conventional management accounting failed due to workers' resistance. Management accounting, an embodiment of capitalist MOP and modern industrial culture, took unexpected roles when confronted by a traditional, rural culture based on Kingship obligations. The Mill was founded by the state as a public enterprise. Government interference into operational affairs was considerable and performance was disappointing, leading to pressures for privatisation. Results improved after privatisation, partly because the Mill adopted more commercial budgeting practices. However, problems of cultural asymmetry were inflamed by a coalition of workers and local managers against foreign owners, who fled when financial irregularities were discovered. The government resumed ownership and budgeting practices of previous eras returned. The conclusion examine the study's implications for further research on management accounting in the Third World.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Accounting and Finance
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2022 13:38
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2022 13:45
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/103684

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