Reflections on stewardship reporting

by Vincent O'Connell
Accounting Horizons ()


Following the July 2005 decision by the IASB/FASB not to designate ‘‘stewardship’’ as a separate financial reporting objective in their converged Conceptual Framework, the purpose of this commentary is to call for a renewed emphasis on stewardship-related research in financial reporting. To this end, I propose specific ques- tions related to the following themes: (1) the interaction between stewardship and decision-usefulness; (2) the contemporary meaning of stewardship; (3) changes in the importance of stewardship over time; (4) stewardship and corporate governance; and (5) stewardship and social and environmental reporting. The primary goal of the pro- posed research agenda is to better inform the debate about the wisdom of consigning the separate stewardship reporting objective to the realms of accounting history in those many nations where the converged IASB/FASB Conceptual Framework is likely to guide the future development of financial reporting standards.

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