Dear subscribers, by now you should have received November’s issue of The Accountant (No. 6156) and you might have noticed that page 20 wasn’t printed. This was due to a mistake down the line in the production process and we are working on making sure this doesn’t happen again. Please accept our apologies for the inconvenience.
Hopefully no pages will be missing in this month’s issue which contains the transcript of one of the most interesting panel discussion I’ve had the privilege to witness in my nearly four years on the accountancy desk.
I might feel partisan as the panel discussion took place at our magazine’s event, but really it was the content that made it worthwhile. The panel chair, University of Essex accounting professor, Prem Sikka questioned the idea of transparency, arguing that in his 48 years in the profession he’s heard a lot about transparency but seen little of it.
BDO Brazil partner Adriano Corrêa, a panel member, assured that BDO and the profession was doing a lot before clumsily avoiding answering the question.
We can agree or disagree with the ideas put forward by Sikka, but what’s really interesting here is the inability of professionals to answer simple questions and to face constructive criticism from a peer.
In fact, out of the 13 speakers that day, Corrêa was one of two who didn’t give his consent to publish the video of his presentation. The other one was ACCA’s Faye Chua.
With that in mind, one wonders how the profession intends to demonstrate transparency, accountability, relevance and build trust with a wider public it claims to act in the interest of, and which doesn’t really understand what the profession does.