This paper reviews major differences between the accounting regulatory systems in Canada and the United States. In the U.S., the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 governs responsibilities of management, auditors, and Boards of Directors related to internal control over financial reporting. In Canada, a series of Multilateral Instruments under provincial jurisdiction serves similar objectives. As compared to the U.S., the Canadian system is more decentralized and principles-based allowing a greater degree of responsibility to the accounting profession for standard setting and oversight. The Canadian approach has resulted in weaker regulation, slower implementation, and greater influence by the accounting profession. These findings imply that accounting regulations should be tailored to fit the political and institutional structures of the adopting country.
This paper provides a critical review of literature on management controls and their context. The review indicates that more emphasis has been placed on organizational than environmental factors and that the effectiveness of different controls in different contexts remains practically unaddressed. In general, research has been ad hoc and focused on results-oriented financial controls, short-term efficiency, and individual level of analysis. Even for commonly studied topics (e.g., budget controls), evidence has often been inconsistent and limited to manufacturing organizations, with little integration and refinement of previous theoretical models based on new evidence. Further research is required to investigate the relative importance of different financial and nonfinancial controls in different types of organizations in order to develop more comprehensive performance measurement and management frameworks.
This survey study of senior municipal administrators examines the use of evaluative criteria in managerial performance evaluation and extends previous findings in the public sector context. The results reveal that the use of evaluative criteria is very similar to that found in Otley and Pollanen's (2000) public-sector study, but significantly different from those reported in several private-sector studies. Substantially lower proportions of budget-based criteria are found in both public-sector studies than in private-sector studies. Performance is higher under low- than high-uncertainty conditions and in larger than smaller organizations. The findings suggest that different evaluative criteria may be appropriate in the public and he findings suggest that different evaluative criteria may be appropriate in the public and private sectors, and that uncertainty and organizational size may affect performance.