Evolution of EAA

In its first 40 years, the European Accounting Association (EAA) has evolved from a body whose life, in the early years, was limited mainly to reuniting members at an annual congress, but has since become a much more proactive organization. Led by Anthony G. Hopwood and sponsored by the European Institute for Advanced Studies in Management (EIASM), the EAA had the initial aim of identifying and assembling a European academic accounting community, in order to come to know each other and to discuss and advance their common interests. Beginning in 1977, the Association published a typescript newsletter, which was succeeded in 1988 by the printed European Accounting News, also containing some research pieces. To promote research, the Association held its first annual doctoral colloquium in 1985 and launched The European Accounting Review (EAR) in 1992. In 2002, the Association began an electronic Members Newswire, which eventually became the quarterly EAA Newsletter. The Association’s second journal, Accounting in Europe, was established in 2004 in order to broaden the range of published research and to forge a closer link with practice.

The Association’s membership has steadily grown to more than 2,200 today, representing over 60 countries and jurisdictions.

In 2005, the Association presented its first Award for Academic Leadership to Anthony Hopwood. In 2009, the award was named the Anthony G. Hopwood Award for Academic Leadership.

Among the proactive programs launched by the Association in recent years are the following:

  • Financial Reporting Standards Committee (launched in 2005) – comments on the IASB’s proposed standards and acquaints the IASB and EFRAG with relevant theoretical and empirical research.
  • PhD Forum (launched in 2013) – a half-day program of speakers held prior to the annual congress for PhD students, enabling them to acquire insights into the world of academic accounting research.
  • Talent Workshop (launched in 2015) – provides a venue for PhD students to present their work and hold interviews with recruiters.
  • Accounting Resources Centre (launched in 2017) – a program platform aimed at marshaling research resources and networking opportunities of relevance to emerging scholars and others interested in accounting research, which includes a peer mentoring initiative to help PhD students improve their research proposals.
  • Stakeholder Reporting Committee, formerly Corporate Reporting Committee (launched in 2019) – to create awareness of the policy issues on non-financial information, and collaborate with policy makers to have an impact on new policies and standards.
  • Virtual Activities Portfolio, – in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the EAA launched the Virtual Accounting Research Seminar (VARS) in April 2020 and has since then developed a structured portfolio of virtual activities to increase the inclusiveness and accessibility of accounting research to a wide audience on a global scale.

The EAA has thus made a major investment in encouraging and stimulating the work of young accounting researchers. In particular, its doctoral colloquium, always held just prior to the annual congress, continues to be a vibrant opportunity for doctoral students to secure advice from highly experienced researchers and to network among their peers.