University of Edinburgh Business School

Communication, Governance & Control

Accounting shapes how organisations are governed and decisions are made in both the private and public sector. We study the emergence of new reporting processes, alternative forms of governance, and how the finance function and controls deal with unknowns in large projects, organisations and society.

Accounting has constituted an instrument of communication, reporting and control. How financial data are produced and ‘consumed’ in financial markets and societies affect the kind of social relationships people have in organisations, markets and societies. Accounting figures, financial metrics and performance indicators shape how organizations are governed in private and public sectors. They influence decision-making processes and outcomes.

We study how communication, governance and controls are changing in the corporate world and beyond by looking at the emergence of new reporting structures and processes, alternative forms of governance in non-corporate spaces and times, changes in the finance function and how accounting deals with unknowns in major programmes, projects and humanitarian aid.

Thanks to University of Edinburgh funding, CAS members interested in Communication, Governance and Control are conducting research on how to innovate the way in which we think and represent notions of value and transparency.

Members of CAS researching Communication, Governance and Control are interested in themes such as:

  • Critical analysis of changes in reporting practices.
  • Rethinking notions of transparency and corporate communication.
  • The role of visualizations in communicating numerical information.
  • The spatial arrangements and material design of financial and management reports.
  • Historical and ethnographical studies of non corporate forms of control and governance.
  • The role of spatial arrangements in organizations in facilitating/impeding innovation, good governance and accountability.
  • The role of reporting processes in understanding risk and uncertainty in major programmes and large infrastructure projects.
  • Changes in the finance function and corporate governance.