University of Leicester
2020ThathnayakaMCLKRPhD.pdf (2.37 MB)

Investment Decisions In Development Projects: A Cultural Political Economy Of Development Accounting

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posted on 2020-02-05, 12:26 authored by Chathurani L. K. R. Rathnayaka Mudiyanselage
Accounting for development has recently gained attention in the extant literature, advancing a research agenda considering structural issues and their impact on accounting practices of both in state and private sector institutions. The role of politics and power in accounting and accountability, especially on resource allocation has been studied with different theoretical frameworks with increasing focus given to the divergent roles of culture and politics, and how these can influence organizational budgeting and resource allocation mechanisms. However, the role of politics in accounting and accountability structures in development agendas, especially in development projects has only been addressed intermittently. By focusing on the management accounting controls and accountability mechanisms in development projects, particularly infrastructural, this thesis tries to fill the gap identified above. It takes a Cultural Political Economy perspective to theorize case study findings of accounting and accountability in development context. The finding exemplifies that donor-funded development projects produce neo-colonial relationships through multi-level patronage politics and ambiguity in management accounting controls and accountability mechanisms. The power relations infused by patronage politics captures the different forms of power within and beyond the state which subsequently, result in departures from ideal types of management accounting controls, perpetuating violation of management accounting controls. This thesis contributes to the debate in the (cultural) political economy of accounting research in Less Developed Countries and development studies.



Kenneth Weir; Ulrike Marx; David Havie

Date of award


Author affiliation

School of Business

Awarding institution

University of Leicester

Qualification level

  • Doctoral

Qualification name

  • PhD



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