More on the Evolution of Accounting

24 February 2009 at 2:10 am 3 comments

| Peter Klein |

For some reason posts dealing with accounting are among our most popular. Perhaps this says something about the Nerd Quotient of the typical O&M reader. Anyway, if you liked the recent post about the evolution of accounting rules, you may enjoy this paper that looks at the problem more systematically.

Accounting is an Evolved Economic Institution

Gregory B. Waymire and Sudipta Basu

We consider accounting from an evolutionary perspective. Accounting encompasses the creation of transactional records, the summarization of records in t-accounts, and the preparation of audited financial statements. Accounting’s history spans at least 10,000 years dating back to the first human settlements in ancient Mesopotamia. Our focus is on the study of accounting history in three ways: providing useful thoughts experiments valuable to researchers interested in the development of modern practices, the use of historical data to test formal hypotheses about the origins of accounting practices, and the development of theories and related empirical evidence that explain accounting based on evolution and ecological rationality. Within this third area, we describe the basis for hypotheses and empirical analyses concerning six issues: (1) the emergence of recordkeeping, (2) the effect of double-entry bookkeeping on the scale and scope of economic organization, (3) the spontaneous emergence of norms of practice in accounting, (4) the impact of law, regulation, and taxation on accounting, (5) the demand for broad principles in evaluating accounting method choices, and (6) the relation between economic crises and major discontinuities in accounting practice.

Entry filed under: - Klein -, Business/Economic History, Institutions.

Game Theory Timeline Copula Functions and the Current Crisis

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. ahmed fatimat wendy  |  29 December 2009 at 1:33 am

    thanks for helping me out
    can you explain more on evolution of accounting theory

  • 2. Dada Kolawole Kabir  |  25 January 2011 at 1:08 pm

    I request your assistance in the area of chronological evolution of accounting theory even before 1494 when the Italian Fra LUca Pacioli wrote his book in General Maths in devoted a chapter on Accounting. I am a post graduate student of accounting from University of Lagos Nigeria,Africa

  • 3. Prince  |  23 January 2013 at 6:04 am

    i need a ful history of evolution of accounting……University of Education Jos

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