Auditing research: A review across the disciplinary divide

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to review the contribution made by auditing research over the last three decades to understandings of audit practice and to consider the implications for the future development of the discipline. Design/methodology/approach - The approach takes the form of a literature review. Findings - The paper challenges the extent of one's knowledge of audit practice, highlighting a variety of concerns with dominant research approaches/traditions and pin-pointing a range of research questions and approaches which offer potentially rewarding insights of the audit practice arena. Practical implications - The paper emphasises the scope for auditing researchers and practitioners to think differently about audit practice and to work collectively in pursuing advances in auditing knowledge and educational processes more generally. Originality/value - The paper illustrates just how vibrant contemporary auditing research agendas can be when the focus is directly on understanding the practice of audit and the work of associated regulatory institutions. It argues that the development of the auditing research discipline has been hindered by desired attachments to so-called notions of "scientific rigour" and a reluctance across significant parts of the discipline to undertake (or even acknowledge) research of a more "qualitative" or "critical" dimension. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-203
Number of pages33
JournalAccounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Auditing
  • Qualitative methods
  • Quantitative methods
  • Regulation
  • Research methods


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