Call for Papers - Special issue on 'Corporate governance dynamics and management control systems innovations'

Guest Editors:
Antonio Leotta, University of Catania
Cristiana Cattaneo, University of Bergamo
Francesca Maria Cesaroni, University of Urbino

Management control systems (MCS) innovations refer to the introduction of new tools and systems managers use to ensure that the behaviours and decisions of an organization’s employees are consistent with its objectives and strategies (Malmi and Brown, 2008). MCS innovations also include the introduction of new uses of the same management control tools and systems, and the involvement of new actors in the controlling process.

In research addressing factors and conditions that can stimulate MCS innovation, attention has been traditionally placed on growth in organization size. Subsequent studies, however, have revealed that size growth is not a sufficient driver of MCS innovations, which is also related to company’s strategy and institutional environment. While the strength and quality of the strategy has been considered a subject of performance measurement (Kaplan, and Norton, 1996; Mitchell et al., 2013), MCS innovations have also been studied as responses to institutional pressures (Busco et al., 2015). In this vein, studies have shown that in organizations where multiple institutional logics are relevant, such as hospitals and public administrations, institutional complexity can strongly affect MCS innovation (Greenwood et al, 2011). For example, hospitals and other multi-professional environments have redesigned their corporate governance mechanisms while introducing MCS innovations. Similarly, public administration has managed the complexity due to the relationship with other actors following different institutional logics. Some authors (Capasso and Dagnino, 2014) also suggest considering corporate governance dynamics as both antecedents and outcomes of MCS innovations. For a long time, strategic and governance functions have been considered separately. More recently, however, the need to overcome the "silo view" of strategic management and corporate governance has been raised. This means investigating how changes in corporate governance mechanisms, coupled with organizational dynamics, are related to MCS innovations.

Changes in corporate governance mechanisms accompanied by MCS innovations have been investigated by management accounting and control studies. Some scholars have examined the adoption of MCS innovations in family firms experiencing a professionalization process (Cattaneo and Bassani, 2020) and highlighted that MCS innovations can facilitate the engagement of family members from different generations. MCS innovations also interact with leadership construction and governance mechanisms in both SMEs and large organizations (Giovannoni et al., 2011; Leotta et al., 2017; Sentuti et al., 2020; Bassani et al., 2021). Some studies have referred to the organization life-cycle model to highlight changes in MCSs as organizations grow (Su et al., 2013; Martin, 2020; Granlund and Taipaleenmäki, 2005), but relationship between this path and corporate governance dynamics is still under-investigated.

Following a different research perspective, management accounting scholars have argued that MCS innovation is promoted by searching for alliances amongst frontline professionals, corporate governance mechanisms, institutional environments. Such networks are spread out in time and space (Justesen and Mouritsen, 2011) and need to be constructed (Revellino and Mouritsen, 2015; Leotta and Ruggeri, 2017). Corporate governance dynamics play a pivotal role in orienting MCS innovations (Mahlendorf, 2015) toward the needs and abilities of frontline professionals, in line with institutional forces in large and smaller organizations. Findings from management accounting literature, however, is still fragmented and lacking.

The knowledge gap on the relationship between corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in large and smaller organizations suggests a deeper examination. Analyses on this topic could also examine whether and how organizations' industry may influence MCS innovation and related corporate governance dynamics. Similarly, differences related to the type of organizations in which MCS innovations are to be introduced, such as for-profit, non-profit or hybrid organizations, as well as family businesses versus non-family businesses, can be investigated.

To further our knowledge on these issues, we encourage the submission of contributions that explore the relationship between corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in different organizational contexts and their underlying peculiarities. Submissions may fit under one of the following broad themes that are meant to be indicative and not exhaustive. We are open to theoretical and empirical papers, using qualitative or quantitative research methods, which address topics such as:

•    Corporate governance mechanisms as antecedents and/or outcomes of MCS innovations.
•    Corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in SME and large organizations.
•    Corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in manufacturing and service companies.
•    Corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations within family firms.
•    Corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in hybrid organizations.
•    Corporate governance dynamics and MCS innovations in public vs. private companies.
•    Corporate governance dynamics, leadership styles and MCS innovations.

Submission procedure
The closing date for submission for this special issue is 30th December 2023.

Manuscripts should be submitted online. Authors’ registration and access will be available at, starting from 1st July 2023.
When submitting your manuscript, you will be asked to specify whether it is for a regular issue or one of the named special issues, so please select the “Management Control systems Innovations” option. The format of the papers must follow the JMG’s submission guidelines.

Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. All papers will be reviewed in accordance with JMG’s standard double-blind review process. Publication is expected in 2024.

The Guest Editors welcome enquiries in advance of submission and declarations of interest. Enquiries can be sent to the attention of the Special Issue Guest Editors: Antonio Leotta,; Cristiana Cattaneo, and Francesca Maria Cesaroni,

Bassani, G., Pfister, J.A. & Cattaneo, C. (2021). Management accounting change as an amplifier of a leadership dispute: an ethnography of convergent and divergent leader–follower relations. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 34(9), 104-134.

Busco, C., Caglio, A. & Scapens, R. W. (2015). Management and accounting innovations: reflecting on what they are and why they are adopted. Journal of Management & Governance, 19(3), 495-524.

Capasso, A. & Dagnino, G.B. (2014). Beyond the ‘‘silo view’’ of strategic management and corporate governance: evidence from Fiat, Telecom Italia and Unicredit. Journal of Management and Governance, 18, 929–957.

Cattaneo, C. & Bassani, G. (2020). Professionalization and Managerialization in Family Firms: A Still Open Issue. In A. Leotta (ed.), Management Controlling and Governance of Family Businesses, Contributions to Management Science, Springer Nature Switzerland AG. 181-194.

Giovannoni, E., Maraghini, M.P. & Riccaboni, A. (2011). Transmitting Knowledge Across Generations: The Role of Management Accounting Practices. Family Business Review, 24(2), 126–150.

Granlund, M. & Taipaleenmäki, J. (2005). Management control and controllership in new economy firms—a life cycle perspective. Management Accounting Research, 16(1), 21-57.

Greenwood, R., Raynard, M, Kodeih, F., Micelotta, E.R. & Lounsbury, M. (2011). Institutional Complexity and Organizational Responses. Academy of Management Annals, 5 (1), 317-371.

Justesen, L. & Mouritsen, J. (2011). Effects of actor-network theory in accounting research, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 24 (2), 161-193.

Leotta, A. & Ruggeri, D. (2017). Performance measurement system innovations in hospitals as translation processes. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 30, (4), 955-978.

Leotta, A., Rizza, C. & Ruggeri, D. (2017). Management accounting and leadership construction in family firms. Qualitative Research in Accounting and Management, 14 (2),189-207.

Malmi, T. & Brown, D.A. (2008). Management control systems as a package—opportunities, challenges and research directions. Management Accounting Research, 19(4), 287–300.

Martin, M. A. (2020). An evolutionary approach to management control systems research: A prescription for future research. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 86, 101186.

Revellino, S. & Mouritsen, J. (2015). Accounting as an engine: The performativity of calculative practices and the dynamics of innovation. Management Accounting Research, 28, 31–49.

Sentuti, A., Cesaroni, F.M., Bassani G. & Cattaneo, C. (2020). Beyond the Founder. Which Conditions Can Favor or Hinder the Professionalization of Family Firms? In A. Leotta (ed.), Management Controlling and Governance of Family Businesses, Contributions to Management Science, Springer Nature Switzerland AG. 181-194.

Su, S., Baird, K. & Schoch, H. (2013). Management control systems from an organisational life cycle perspective: The role of input, behaviour and output controls. Journal of Management & Organization, 19(5), 635-658.

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