Area of Expertise
- Accounting - Globalization
- Accounting - History
- Accounting - Immigration
- Accounting Institutions
Marcia Annisette, who previously served as Associate Dean, Students and Director of Schulich’s Master of Accounting Program, is the new Associate Dean, Academic. Her major research interest is in the social organization of the accountancy profession. In particular, her research seeks to understand the strategies deployed by professional accounting bodies to differentiate themselves and achieve monopoly or elite status in the market for expert accounting labour. Her research has an international breath and includes studies of the profession in Ireland, England, Trinidad and Tobago and Canada. Her research is also historically and sociological informed and specifically looks at the manner in which national bases of social exclusion such as religion, social class, race, nationality or immigration status, interact with professional structures to achieve professional closure.
2016 Mary Parker Follett Manuscript Award “Highly Commended” for Immigration and Neo-Liberalism: Three Cases and Counter Accounts (with Cheryl Lehman and Gloria Ageymang) Accounting Auditing and Accountability Journal, Vol. 29(1), pp. 43-79.
2011 Mary Parker Follett Manuscript Award “Highly Commended” for Justification and Accounting: Applying Sociology of Worth to Accounting Research (with Alan J Richardson) Accounting Auditing and Accountability Journal, Vol. 24(2), pp. 229-249.
2008 Literati Network Awards for Excellence Outstanding Paper Award Winner for “Joined for the common purpose: the establishment of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland as an All-Ireland Institution” (with Philip O’ Regan) Qualitative Research in Accounting and Management, Vol. 4(1) pp.4-25
Annisette, M., Graham, C. and Grisard, C. (2020), "Performative Agency and Incremental Change in a CSR Context", Accounting, Organizations and Society, 82.
Based on a two-year participant observation, this paper shows how CSR managers align CSR programs closer to their personal convictions and eventually bring about incremental change. We focus on two CSR managers working on a project to develop a business aimed at serving rural West African consumers and show that while they frame their project in financial terms, they incrementally transform the firm’s representations in accordance with their own vision of CSR. We deploy Butler’s understanding of subjection through performative agency to show that even if CSR managers reproduce the CSR business case discourse to render their actions legitimate and recognizable, this empowers them to exercise a small degree of agency, allowing them to infuse a more inclusive perception of rural low-income populations into the firm’s practices. This paper makes two contributions. First, it shows that the subject can incrementally act to transform the dominant financial discourse governing her subjection to better align it with her desire. Second, we establish that the CSR manager navigates between the traditional duo of CSR actors: the organization and its stakeholders and therefore renders porous the boundary between them both.
Annisette, M. (2017), "Discourse of the Professions: The Making, Normalizing and Taming of Ontario’s ‘Foreign-Trained’ Accountant", Accounting, Organizations and Society, 60, 37-61.
Informed by insights from the sociology of categories (Lamont, 1992; Lamont & Molnar, 2002; Gieryn, 1983) and the anthropology of pollution (Douglas, 1966), the paper focuses on how the category “foreign-trained accountant” is constructed on the basis of attributes that are deemed polluting and impure in the context of Ontario accountancy. The paper illustrates the problems of social categorization by demonstrating how Ontario’s ‘new immigrant’ ACCA and CIMA qualified accountants, straddled two incompatible categories and in so doing, became dangerously polluting to the professional accountancy landscape of Ontario. Theoretically, the paper locates boundary-work within the sociology of categories literature, and by making an analytical distinction between boundary-work and social closure, provides a perspective for understanding the cultural dimension of professions.
Annisette, M. and Prasad, A. (2017), "Critical Accounting Research in Hyper-Racial Times", Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 43, 5-19.
The paper expresses deep concern for the paucity of critical accounting scholarship in the contemporary period that can only be deemed hyper-racial (Alim and Reyes, 2011). By reflecting on how the concept of race has been mobilized in the critical accounting literature, we identify the contours of extant accounting research on race and we discuss the pitfalls and the challenges of pursuing scholarship in this area. In addition, we develop a framework for future research on race and accounting aimed at rendering our efforts more impactful and more subversive in challenging contemporary systems and practices of inequality based on race.
Annisette, M., Anslem, T. and Vesty, G. (2017), "Accounting Values, Controversies and Compromises in Tests of Worth", Research in the Sociology of Organizations, 52, 209-239.
This article will consider the various ways in which accounting can be conceptualized within Boltanski and Thévenot’s economies of worth theoretic. Drawing on two case illustrations, a not-for-profit welfare agency and a government-owned water utility, we follow the unfolding of disputes and the variety of outcomes in which accounting is implicated. We illustrate the role of accounting in justificatory actions and the ways in which it “holds things together” in compromise arrangements. We also illustrate the situations which challenge the “test” of worth and the innovative accounting responses that either facilitate coordination and agreement or become controversial and be the object of organizational and institutional dispute.
Ageymang, G., Annisette, M. and Lehman (2016), "Immigration and Neoliberalism: Three Cases and Counter Accounts", Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, 29(1), 43-79.
Purpose – This paper advocates for critical accounting’s contribution to immigration deliberations as part of its agenda for advancing social justice. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate accounting as implicated in immigration policies of three advanced economies. Design/methodology/approach – The authors suggest that neoliberal immigration policies are operationalized through the responsibilization of individuals, corporations and universities. By examining three immigration policies from the USA, Canada and the UK, the paper clarifies how accounting technologies facilitate responsibilization techniques, making immigration governable. Additionally, by employing immigrant narratives as counter accounts, the impacts of immigrant lived experiences can be witnessed. Findings – Accounting upholds neoliberal principles of life by expanding market mentalities and governance, through technologies of measurement, reports, audits and surveillance. A neoliberal strategy of responsibilization contributes to divesting authority for immigration policy in an attempt to erase the social and moral agency of immigrants, with accounting integral to this process. However the social cannot be eradicated as the work illustrates in the narratives and counter accounts that immigrants create. Research limitations/implications – The work reveals the illusion of accounting as neutral. As no single story captures the nuances and complexities of immigration practices, further exploration is encouraged. Originality/value – The work is a unique contribution to the underdeveloped study of immigration in critical accounting. By unmasking accounting’s role and revealing techniques underpinning immigration discourses, enhanced ways of researching immigration are possible.
Annisette, M. and Trivedi, S. (2013), "Globalization, Paradox and the (Un)making of Identities: Immigrant Chartered Accountants of India in Canada", Accounting, Organizations and Society, 38(1), 1-29.
We study the labour market experiences of immigrant accountants in Canada, to reveal the tensions contradictions and paradoxes embedded in neoliberal globalization. Drawing on themes within pragmatic sociology (Boltanski & Thévenot,  2006), we argue that globalization has differentially impacted on the moral orders underpinning the identity projects of the Canadian state and the elite sector of the accountancy profession and this has in turn created three paradoxes: paradox of the state, paradox of the market and paradox of place.
Project Title Role Award Amount Year Awarded Granting Agency Project TitleSlavery Memory and Citizenship. (Paul Lovejoy Principal Applicant) RoleCo-Investigator Award Amount$2,500,000.00 Year Awarded2008-2013 Granting AgencySocial Sciences and Humanities Research Council - Major Collaborative Research Initiative Project TitleThe Relationship between Accounting and Globalization (Alan Richardson Co Applicant) RolePrincipal Investigator Award Amount$78,000.00 Year Awarded2007-2010 Granting AgencySocial Sciences and Humanities Research Council - Standard Research Grant Project Title RolePrincipal Investigator Award Amount$90,000.00 Year Awarded2005 Granting AgencySchulich School of Business - Minor Research Grant