Epistemic Integrity in Accounting

Business and Professional Ethics Journal 32 (1-2):109-130 (2013)
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Abstract

This paper presents an epistemological or knowledge-theoretic reinterpretation of the role of external accountants. It presents a joint epistemic agent model in which corporate management and accountants together form a source of testimonial knowledge for the firm’s stakeholders about the firm’s financial situation. Recent work from virtue epistemology is used, according to which knowledge is, roughly, true belief that is justified by way of the exercise of epistemic virtue. In the joint epistemic agent model, corporate management provides information, while the accountants ensure justification. The paper argues that to ensure justification, accountants have to exercise self-regarding epistemic virtues such as open-mindedness, but also other-regarding epistemic virtues such as generosity. It is also argued that these virtues are only partly encompassed in existing professional codes of conduct.

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Boudewijn de Bruin
University of Groningen

Citations of this work

philosophy of money and finance.Boudewijn De Bruin, Lisa Maria Herzog, Martin O'Neill & Joakim Sandberg - 2018 - In Edward Zalta (ed.), Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Palo Alto: Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford University.

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References found in this work

The epistemology of testimony.Jennifer Lackey & Ernest Sosa (eds.) - 2006 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Epistemic Virtue and Doxastic Responsibility.James Montmarquet - 1992 - American Philosophical Quarterly 29 (4):331-341.

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