Themes

CRAFiC is a leading interdisciplinary centre providing cutting edge research into the pressing accounting and financial issues of our day.

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Mission Statement

‘to develop inclusive, sustainable and resilient societies through the interdisciplinary study of accounting and finance in local and global contexts’.

Vision Statement

‘CRAFiC will build on the Sheffield School principles of studying accounting and finance in context, developing interdisciplinary projects that address complex societal questions about organisations, markets, society and the environment. CRAFiC will produce academically novel work that contributes to the construction of socially inclusive, environmentally sustainable and financially resilient societies. Our work aims to influence organisational stakeholders and to provide a voice to all segments of society affected by accounting and financial decisions at local, national and global levels’.

Research Themes

Transparency, Accountability And Justice

Audit failure, corporate transparency and the efficacy of accounting standards dominate contemporary newsflow. Researchers within this theme engage this state of play by asking important questions about the adequacy of contemporary financial reporting and audit regimes. This work examines the transparency of regulatory and institutional frameworks, including those around the taxation regime and country by country reporting; questions of audit reform and accounting rule changes; issues around transparency and social justice in developing countries; problems around the ‘resource curse’ in countries rich in natural resources, and more generally the role for an emancipatory accounting in achieving a more accountable and just world.

Sustainable And Inclusive Futures

The failure to account for the costs of climate change and environmental degradation within current accounting rules and reporting practices is a pressing concern. Current work includes, inter alia, accounting for biodiversity, the development of extinction accounting and extinction engagement frameworks, accountability and the social and environmental impacts of globalisation on developing country firms, workers and communities. Exploring the historical roots of social and environmental accounting in a critical manner is also a traditional focus of this group’s research. Another emerging theme in this area is the examination of the role of accounting in the micro organisational level implementation of sustainable development goals (SDGs).

Management Accounting, New Technology And Changing Organisational Forms

Management accounting coordinates, shapes, and is shaped by, new technologies and changing organisational forms. Researchers in this theme continue the legacy of CRAFiC’s rich history of management accounting and control research to take an interdisciplinary examination of these processes. This research agenda examines accounting’s role in the coordination of supply chains, supply networks and flexible intra- and inter-organisational arrangements. Enterprise risk management, supply chain accounting and the innovative application of new technologies to support performance, transparency and wellbeing are studied using different theoretical lenses. Global challenges are central to this research portfolio.

Financialization And New Inequalities

A growing body of work suggests that finance-led, shareholder-oriented economies lead to short-termism, economic fragility and greater inequality. Researchers working within this theme explore the changing character of financialization, looking specifically at the financialization of accounting regimes and the way fair value has reshaped corporate priorities and practice. Work here examines the relation between increased shareholder distributions and investment, productivity and competitive advantage. Methods such as social network analysis are also used to understand processes of valuation and exchange in derivatives markets, providing a more sociological perspective on financial crises. 

Financial Markets: Banking, Information, Regulation

Modern financial markets are complex organisational structures that respond dynamically to financial innovation, and economic and social changes. Researchers in this area offer a more quantitative approach to this problem. Work here focuses on the impact of new information on asset prices and uncertainty; the regulation and resilience of market structures as financial intermediation changes, which includes work on cyber security, terrorist funding and money laundering; the future of finance, including how the banking system responds to new technology and uncharted institutional, societal and environmental changes. Research also focuses on the risk-taking behaviour of financial institutions in response to asymmetric managerial incentives, the transmission of uncertainty under exogenous shocks, the effects of post-crisis regulatory reforms on market-based finance, and the social relations that underpin today’s highly interactive financial markets.

Corporate Finance: Access, Innovation, Risk

How firms finance their activities is of central concern to practitioners, policy makers and scholars alike. The work in this area focuses on a theoretical and empirical analysis of the valuation of firms transitioning from private to public ownership, including initial public offerings; venture capital; private equity; market risk; and the application of artificial intelligence to problems in finance.

Good Governance And Resilient Organisations

Sound governance principles underwrite stable organisations. Researchers in this theme examine both corporate governance and governance within and across national borders. Our corporate governance research addresses financial and non-financial institutions in both developed and emerging market economies. The research on governance within national borders explores the factors that determine the nature of formal institutions, as well as mechanisms that can improve the effectiveness of triangular cooperation between the public, private and third sectors. This research addresses cross-border governance issues around the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), climate change and migration, plastics and the circular economy, the movements of refugees, human trafficking and modern slavery.

Decolonizing Accounting Teaching And Research

Historically, Western traditions and assumptions have dominated both the ways in which accounting is researched and the intellectual premises that inform its content. This research theme's objective is to develop approaches and embrace ideas that reflect traditions from across the world. Methodological pluralism and innovation is at the heart of the Sheffield School approach and here we aim  to shape a composition of knowledge that is truly international to decolonize accounting research and its taught curriculum in Western universities.