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Researching the absence of professional organisation in Victorian England

Edwards, John Richard 2010. Researching the absence of professional organisation in Victorian England. Accounting Business & Financial History 20 (2) , pp. 177-208. 10.1080/09585206.2010.485748

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Abstract

Professionalisation is a major research focus of accounting historians, with particular attention paid to circumstances attending the formation and spread of accounting associations. This paper adds a new dimension to such research by examining the failure of public accountants to create a professional body in circumstances that appear conducive to organisational formation whether viewed from a functionalist or critical perspective. It is argued that strategies adopted by Bristol's leading public accountants enabled them to achieve economic and social advance in the absence of organisational formation. Of importance was how they positioned themselves in Bristol society through geographical location, the political, philanthropic and religious networks that connected them to the governing élite, and devices employed for publicising their services. Also relevant was their association with key venues where professionals and businessmen met to discuss commercial affairs. No inconsistency is revealed between the failure of Bristol's leading accountants to form a professional association in the 1870s and their enthusiastic embrace of chartered status following formation of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales in 1880.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D204 Modern History
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5601 Accounting
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Uncontrolled Keywords: Professionalization ; Bristol ; Accountants ; Elites ; Networks
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0958-5206
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 03:20
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/19977

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