To replicate or not to replicate? That is the question


School of Accountancy

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The scientific research world was shaken by revelations of a crisis in reproducing well-regarded research in psychology. This crisis reverberated across several academic disciplines including accounting, which led to controversy about the place and status of replications in accounting. The imperative for encouraging replications in our field is not new and has been met largely with opposition. While antagonists and advocates hold their ground, I believe it is critical to address misconceptions of the role and value of replication studies. In this essay, I clarify the role of replications focusing on two general types of replication: close and differentiated replications. I then discuss the status of replication in accounting followed by a brief narrative on a well-known replication in the auditor independence literature. My concluding comments weave through suggested pathways for a better understanding of replication studies.

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Journal of Accounting and Public Policy

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