Heritage reporting by the Australian Public sector:possibilities from the concepts of new public governance

Woon, Peir, Chatterjee, Bikram and Cordery, Carolyn J. (2018). Heritage reporting by the Australian Public sector:possibilities from the concepts of new public governance. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal , (In Press)

Abstract

Purpose This paper seeks to contribute to the future development of heritage reporting in Australia. Public sector reporting of heritage has been a long-standing issue, due to shortcomings in (sector-neutral) for-profit-based financial reporting standards. Australia’s sector-neutral approach does not meet public sector users’ information needs. We develop a heritage reporting model to balance community and other stakeholders’ interests and address prior critiques. Design/methodology/approach The paper reviews heritage reporting requirements in Anglo-Western Countries, and analyses commentaries and research publications. It evaluates the existing reporting requirements in the context of New Public Management (NPM) (which focuses on information and efficiency) and New Public Governance (NPG) (focusing on balancing interests and quality). Findings The paper proposes a NPG-based heritage reporting model which includes indicators of performance on the five UNESCO (1972) dimensions and operational guidelines issued by UNESCO (2015). These are identification, presentation, protection, conservation and transmission. The proposed model is consistent with the notion of US SFFAS 29 (the standard for Federal entities). Not all heritage must be capitalised and hence attachment of monetary value, but detailed disclosures are necessary. Research limitations/implications We expect the proposed heritage reporting model to better serve users of heritage information compared to the present AASB 116: Property, Plant and Equipment. Originality/value Our proposed model of heritage reporting attempts to answer Carnegie and Wolnizer’s (1995, 1999) six questions, addresses decades of concerns raised in previous literature and provides a new perspective to heritage reporting based on NPG that should better serve users’ needs.

Divisions: Aston Business School > Accounting
Accepted Date: 2018-06-28
Authors: Woon, Peir
Chatterjee, Bikram
Cordery, Carolyn J. ( 0000-0001-9511-7671)

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