Accounting, Auditing and Governance

Accounting, auditing and governance are among the central topics of modern business life and at the same time among the areas with the fastest growth of worldwide regulatory activities. As a consequence, financial statements are increasingly complemented with detailed information on complex topics such as risk management, corporate governance, and executive compensation. The research and teaching activities within this topic focus on the fundamental roles of accounting information in facilitating sound economic decisions and in evaluating the management’s stewardship function.

Recent research has analyzed the impact of regulatory changes on these fundamental accounting objectives. Representative research questions are the economic consequences of adopting new accounting standards, the cost and benefits of central corporate governance reforms such as “say on pay”, as well as the impact of the financial crises on the disclosure policy of European banks. 

Research projects

Exemplary project: Say on Pay and CEO’s Investment Incentives (R. Göx)

We conduct a laboratory experiment to study the consequences of a binding "say on pay" (SoP) on the investment incentives and the compensation of a CEO who has discretion over her own pay. We find that a binding SoP effectively reduces the rent of a powerful CEO but it also creates a hold-up problem that undermines the CEO’s investment incentives. The problem is that shareholders can refuse the CEO’s bonus after she has chosen a profitable investment project. Therefore, a binding SoP effectively reduces the CEO's compensation but also the firm's profit. We find that neither a repeated interaction nor communication between the CEO and long-term oriented shareholders improves investment efficiency and the firm’s profit but it allows the CEO to extract higher rents.

Selected research projects

Connections to courses

Accounting, Auditing and Governance addresses students interested in a professional or academic career in these areas. Experts will find attractive positions in auditing or consulting firms, accounting departments of banks, manufacturing or pharmaceutical firms as well as in public institutions or regulatory authorities. Contents of Accounting, Auditing and Governance are taught in the Business Administration core elective areas 1, 2 and 5 in the Management and Economics specialization at the Assessment, Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral level. The following list provides examples of courses particularly related to Accounting, Auditing and Governance.

List of courses

More detailed information on each module can be found by copying the 8-digit code into the search field of the University’s course catalogue.

Course catalogue

Assessment level

Financial Accounting AOEC0016
Financial ReportingAOEC0002

Bachelor's level

Advanced Managerial AccountingBOEC0329
Financial Statement AnalysisBOEC0226
Internal and External AuditingBOEC0288
Managerial AccountingBOEC0015
Case Studies in Managerial AccountingBOEC0037
GovernanceBOEC0273
GovernanceBOEC0058
Internal and External AuditingBOEC0306
SAP Managerial AccountingBOEC0317
Unternehmensberichterstattung und Corporate GovernanceBOEC0088

Master's level

Accounting and Economics MOEC0259
Advanced Financial Accounting MOEC0213
Executive Compensation and Incentives Systems MOEC0368
Case Studies in Managerial Accounting MOEC0075
iDecor - the strategy and accounting business simulation game MOEC0095
International AccountingMOEC0342
Managerial and Tax Aspects of Transfer PricingMOEC0367
Selected Cases in Auditing MOEC0132
Sustainability Reporting - Strategy, Implementation and Reporting MOEC0366


Doctoral Students
will find a variety of core and elective courses in Accounting, Auditing and Governance and can take advantage of the courses offered by the Doctoral Program Network in Accounting DAR-CH+ (Basel, Bern, Zurich) and its Austrian Partner Network DART (Graz & Vienna).

Faculty members involved

The following Faculty members research and/or teach in Accounting, Auditing and Governance.

Department of Banking and Finance (IBF)

Prof. Dr. Alexander F. Wagner