The Use and non-use of the Government Financial Report by Maltese Members of Parliament Josette Caruana

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Uploaded by Josette Caruana     Uploaded date: May 14, 2020    
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Publication date
April 16, 2018
Paper language
Abstract
Purpose: This study examines the use and non-use of the Government Financial Report by Maltese Members of Parliament. It refers to information overload theory to analyse the gap between financial reports and their relevance for decision making.

Design/Methodology Approach: A mix of qualitative (interviews) and quantitative (questionnaire) research tools are applied, with the Maltese Members of Parliament being the research participants. This method is acclaimed to be comprehensive, but this study highlights certain disadvantages when applied in the political arena.

Findings: The characteristics of the information itself could be the main cause of information overload, resulting in the non-use of the financial report for decision making. Politicians refer to financial data for their decision making, but not to the data presented in the financial report. Irrespective of the politician’s professional background, the data in the financial report is perceived as incomplete and outdated.

Originality: There is a growing number of research concerning politicians’ use of budgetary and performance information, at local and regional levels of government. This study investigates exclusively the use of the financial report by politicians at central level, in a politically stable environment.

Value: The cause of information overload and its effects are important considerations for preparers of financial information and accounting standard setters, if they wish that their production is relevant for decision makers.
Preferred Citation
Caruana, J. and Farrugia, B. (2018). The Use and non-use of the Government Financial Report by Maltese Members of Parliament. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal. 31(4), pp. 1124-1144.
Keywords
decision making; financial information; governmental reporting; information overload; qualitative characteristics
Email
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Category
Financial accounting
Type of Paper
Published paper

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From the journal
AAAJ

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