21-24 November 2011
Professor Alnoor Bhimani delivered the keynote address at the African Accounting and Finance Research Association Conference held on 21-24 November 2011 in Abuja, Nigeria. His presentation entitled "Globalisation and Technology: Implications for African Accounting Research and Practice" discussed the key implications of gobal risk growth, governance gaps and economic transparency issues for African countries. He identified a variety of related research domains for accounting and finance researchers. Professor Bhimani noted in particular how accountability, transparency and governance infrastructures have become key elements of ongoing global growth concerns and discussed how this is impacting accounting practices and financial controls within industry, state institutions and civil society bodies in Africa. He identified the fast pace of digitisation, the advent of computerised and mobile technologies and the rapid expansion of information volume and complexity as drivers of change which are altering the way planners, decision makers and consumers are using financial information. Professor Bhimani warned of the consequences of only reacting to rather than actively shaping emerging structures of accountability and governance. He commented on the need for new modes of governance to reflect contextual challenges and specificities intrinsic to African countries. He hightlighted the urgent need to train academics in the development of information structures and to expand educational initiatives. This is essential he argued to build a workforce capable of constructing and using accounting and finance information to achieve superior decisions and to mobilise action that will contribute to social equity and desired industrial and national growth targets.