The Influence of Management Accounting Departments within German Municipal Administrations

27 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2015

See all articles by Bernhard Hirsch

Bernhard Hirsch

Bundeswehr University Munich

Christian Nitzl

University of the German Federal Armed Forces - Universität der Bundeswehr München

Joachim Schauß

University of the German Federal Armed Forces - Universität der Bundeswehr München

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Date Written: May 2015

Abstract

The achievement of better performance from municipal administrations is an ongoing challenge. We use the contingency theory perspective, which concentrates on the specific environmental settings of organisations, to examine the influence of management accounting departments within German municipal administrations. Our findings indicate that as the size of municipalities increases, the level of their administrative performance decreases. We additionally show that this negative effect can be mitigated when management accounting is seen as being highly relevant and when the management accounting department performs well. Furthermore, a comparison of the accounting systems (cash versus accrual accounting) used in municipal administrations reveals that a successful working management accounting department can only exert a positive effect when the municipal administration acts under an accrual accounting regime.

Keywords: municipalities, management accounting departments, performance, accrual accounting, partial least squares

Suggested Citation

Hirsch, Bernhard and Nitzl, Christian and Schauß, Joachim, The Influence of Management Accounting Departments within German Municipal Administrations (May 2015). Financial Accountability & Management, Vol. 31, Issue 2, pp. 192-218, 2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2589293 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/faam.12052

Bernhard Hirsch (Contact Author)

Bundeswehr University Munich ( email )

Werner-Heisenberg-Weg 39
Neubiberg, 85577
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.unibw.de

Christian Nitzl

University of the German Federal Armed Forces - Universität der Bundeswehr München ( email )

Werner-Heisenberg-Weg 39
Neubiberg
Munich, 85579
Germany

Joachim Schauß

University of the German Federal Armed Forces - Universität der Bundeswehr München ( email )

Werner-Heisenberg-Weg 39
Neubiberg
Munich, 85579
Germany

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