Accountability and Human Rights: A Tentative exploration and commentary

Robert Hugh Gray, Susan Gray

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    22 Citations (Scopus)


    There continues to be many attempts to articulate what is meant by Human Rights but Griseri and Sepella's (2010, p. 176) adaptation of Leighton et al. (2002) as “entitlements that one holds by virtue of being a human being” takes us to the heart of the matter. What is it to be human and what does humanity demand of us? But the notion is far from settled; it is far from uncontentious; despite its domination by lawyers it is far from simply legalistic; and the matter has only relatively recently been taken up as a matter of focus amongst business and management academics. Human rights have, as yet, almost no presence in accounting and finance. This short essay seeks to provide an introduction to the practitioner papers presented in this issue of CPA and in doing so to provide some context within which the papers might be better appreciated. As happens too often for comfort, practice (at least regulatory and NGO practice) is still leading research and theory in the field of Human Rights. Providing that context offers us the opportunity to speculate on how – notwithstanding the potentially seminal papers that also appear in this issue – we might see accounting academe recognising and responding more widely to Human Rights.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)781 - 789
    Number of pages9
    JournalCritical Perspectives on Accounting
    Issue number8
    Early online date27 Jul 2011
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


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