A4 Conference proceedings

Accounting for intangibles – A literature review and cross-continental analysis

Publication Details
Authors: Hussinki Henri, Garanina Tatiana, Dumay John, Steinhöfel Erik
Publication year: 2019
Language: English
Related Journal or Series Information: Proceedings IFKAD
Title of parent publication: Knowledge Ecosystems and Growth - Proceedings of the 14th International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics
Journal acronym: IFKAD
eISBN: 978-88-96687-12-3
JUFO-Level of this publication: 0
Permanent website address: https://www.ifkad.org/proceedings/
Open Access: Not an Open Access publication


This paper presents
the results of a systematic literature review (SLR) on intangibles and
intellectual capital (IC) focusing on articles published in the top 20
accounting journals between 2000 and 2017. In the frame of this study,
intangibles are defined as all the value carrying non-material and intellectual
resources and properties of the firm, which can be deployed in value creating
organizational processes and activities. In the Australian, Asian and European
literature, they are commonly known as intellectual capital (IC), while the
American scholars and practitioners prefer to call them as intangible assets. By
evaluating recent developments in international literature and comparing research
conducted in different continents, this paper aims at the identification of trends
in intangibles literature globally and continent-specific characteristics and
preferences within this growing research avenue. This allows for drawing
conclusions and recommendations on forward progress of intangibles research in
different geographical locations, for instance, on how to find a better balance
between positivist and qualitative research approaches and the related analysis
methods. This paper combines a literature search process with content analysis
to identify and examine the relevant academic contributions. This SLR is timely
as the field of accounting for intangibles has changed in the post-millennial
era due developments in accounting regulations and public policy. We find that
post-millennial North American, African and Asian accounting scholars
predominantly focus on empirical examination of accounting of rather
identifiable intangibles, such as research and development (R&D) expenses,
goodwill and patents and how these are reflected in the balance sheet.
Conversely, Australian, Continental European and British accounting scholars
pay more attention to management of intangibles, such as IC, and utilize
multi-method approaches in their research.

Last updated on 2020-20-03 at 10:03