MARCH 3, 2003
Lee Drutman: (202) 265-6164
for Integrity in Accounting Outlines Ambitious Agenda at Close
of Founding Conference
- March 3 - The Association for Integrity in Accounting (AIA),
a new public interest accounting group formed in the wake of the
recent corporate scandals, today outlined an ambitious agenda
to restore integrity to the accounting profession.
founded by leading accounting professors and professionals, will
focus on four main areas: 1) watching the watchdogs; 2) restoring
professional independence; 3) assuring corporate accountability
and disclosure; and 4) redeeming accounting education.
of the Association for Integrity in Accounting is to provide an
independent forum to present and advance positions on a wide range
of critical accounting and auditing issues, standards and regulations
affecting the accountability and integrity of the profession and
the public interest in maintaining trust and confidence in accounting,”
said founding member Linda Ruchala, an associate professor of
accountancy at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
held its founding meeting this weekend in Washington D.C. with
members from around the world.
As a watchdog
of the watchdogs, the AIA will undertake a thorough evaluation
of the current financial reporting system and keep a close eye
on the activities of the Securities and Exchange Commission and
other regulatory boards. The AIA’s preliminary evaluation calls
for abolishing the Financial Accounting Standards Board
professional independence, the AIA will propose legislative and
rule changes to alleviate the conflicts of interest that arise
from the way that CPAs are currently selected and paid.
In the area
of assuring corporate accountability and disclosure, the AIA will
call for increased transparency on stock options and derivatives
and for expanding the reporting of social and environmental liabilities.
The AIA will be a voice for openness and transparency in accounting.
In order to
redeem education, the AIA will call on educators to help accounting
students think critically and independently instead of memorizing
technical and often flawed rule-based approaches. The AIA will
investigate and publicize the lessons of Enron and other accounting
scandals so students, professionals, and the public can learn
from these “corporate autopsies.”
“We are enduring
an economic blight that has been engendered by a systematic violation
of the fiduciary mandate, where insiders – management, directors,
auditors, bankers, consultants, etc. – have betrayed their public
trust,” said founding member Tony Tinker, a professor of accountancy
at CUNY-Baruch College. “Systemic problems require solutions that
are adequate to their scale; AIA’s mission is to initiate such
a comprehensive re-evaluation of accounting and auditing practice.
a nonprofit that promotes citizen participation in democracy,
is helping the AIA get started as part of its incubation program
of needed public interest voices.
“For too long,
the public interest voices in the accounting industry have been
overwhelmed by corporate pressures,” said Ralph Nader, founder
of Citizen Works. “Today, we are pleased to introduce a new public
interest voice to restore integrity to the accounting profession,
to remind the profession of its public interest duty, and to make
sure that we can all benefit from their work honestly and well
done, no matter how large, how powerful and how demanding their
|Common Dreams NewsCenter is a non-profit news service
providing breaking news and views for the Progressive Community.
press release posted here has been provided to Common Dreams NewsWire by
one of the many progressive organizations who make up America's Progressive Community.
you wish to comment on this press release or would like more information,
please contact the organization directly.
*all times Eastern US (GMT-5:00)
Read our Guidelines
for Submitting News Releases
1997-2003 Common Dreams.