Perceptions of the accountant held by business students and business professionals in an emerging country: The case of Qatar
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to investigate how business students and business professionals in Qatar perceive the accountancy profession. Design/methodology/approach - The paper designs a survey based on Osgood semantic differential theory of attitude assessment (30 bipolar pairs). The survey is administrated to 400 respondents. Factor analysis reduces variables to five and analysis of variance is employed to study the main differences between groups. Findings - Findings show that professionals and students, taken together, report a fairly positive image of the accountancy profession. However, students' perceptions are more positive compared to professionals. Among students, other demographics affect how students view the accountancy profession. Research limitations/implications - The sample is limited. Larger samples would confirm or otherwise the findings of this study. Future research could enlarge the scope by including other actors such as educators. Also, exploring other Arab countries would contribute to building knowledge of the subject matter. Practical implications - The study has implications for the accounting profession regulatory bodies who would certainly benefit from knowledge of the general perception of the profession. Such knowledge could give rise to specific initiatives aimed as enhancing aspects of the profession that are perceived less than positively. Originality/value - This paper builds on research commencing in the early 1970s concerning perceptions of the accountant and the accounting profession in general. So far, most of the studies have been conducted in developed countries. This study makes a moderate contribution by being one of the few that focuses the research on a new emerging country, namely Qatar.
Education, Business and Society: Contemporary Middle Eastern Issues
Accounting, Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified