Accounting change in local authorithies. What are the conditions for improvement in the management perspective?
The importance of the information system to support management in the public sector is highlighted by the role played in the reform processes (Pollit, Bouckaert, 2004; Anselmi, 2008; Lapsley, 2008; Barzelay, 2010; Broadbent, Laughlin, 2013; Borgonovi et al. 2015). The change of information systems is a crucial factor in order to innovate the management functions (Burns, Scapens, 2000; Burns, Vaivio, 2001).
The paper follows the idea of Burns and Scapens (2000), aiming to analyze the consequences of the introduction of a new accounting system, verifying the degree of internalization of change, in a process perspective (Covalesky et al., 1993). The implementation process will be defined by: prevailing dominant institutions, rules before the change and consistency with the predominant organization values (Scapens, 1994; Burns, 2000; Granlund, 2001; Johansson, Siverbo, 2009; Ma, Tayles, 2009).
The accounting rules potentially conflicts with the vision mainly oriented towards technical and political aspects (Burns, 2000; Pereira et al., 2003) limiting their impact (Shields, 1995; Granlund, 2001). This situation must be analyzed in the specific context of local authorities, in relation to different propensity manifested in adopting and using the new accounting system (Dillard et al., 2004; Hopper, Major, 2007).
In the light of theoretical premises, issues arise such as: is the change based on a rational perspective? Does it receive an effective implementation? Are the instruments consistent with the objectives that the reform intended to achieve? (Anselmi, Pavan, Reginato, 2012; Alvino et al., 2016; Carini et al., 2016).
Keywords: accounting change, public management, information systems.
Del Bene, L., Fiorillo, F., Cavallini, I., Caporaletti, B. (2019). Accounting change negli enti locali. Quali condizioni per il miglioramento nell’ottica gestionale? Management Control, n.3, pp. 59-78. DOI: 10.3280/MACO2019-003004