Audit Cultures: Anthropological Studies in Accountability and the Academy Academy

 European Association of Social Anthropologists (Series)

Marilyn Strathern, 2000

sshot-1Do audit cultures deliver greater responsibility, or do they stifle creative thought?We are all increasingly subjected to auditing, and alongside that, subject to accountability for our behaviour and actions. Audit cultures pervade in the workplace, our governmental and public institutions as well as academia. However, audit practices themselves have consequences, beneficial and detrimental, that often go unexamined.This book examines how pervasive practices of accountability are, the political and cultural conditions under which accountability flourishes and the consequences of their application. Twelve social anthropologists look at this influential and controversial phenomenon, and map out the effects around Europe and the Commonwealth, as well as in contexts such as the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund and Academic institutions. The result provides an excellent insight into auditing and its dependence on precepts of economic efficiency and ethical practice. This point of convergence between these moral and financial priorities provides an excellent opening for debate on the culture of management and accountability.

Table of contents :

Book Cover……Page 1
Title……Page 4
Contents……Page 5
List of contributors……Page 8
Preface……Page 12
Introduction: new accountabilities……Page 14
The social organization of the IMF’s mission work: an examination of international auditing……Page 34
Coercive accountability: the rise of audit culture in higher education……Page 70
Generic genius;how does it all add up?……Page 103
Accountability, anthropology and the European Commission……Page 119
The trickster’s dilemma: ethics and the technologies of the anthropological self……Page 148
Audited accountability and the imperative of responsibility: beyond the primacy of the political……Page 186
Self-accountability, ethics and the problem of meaning……Page 209
The university as panopticon: moral claims and attacks on academic freedom……Page 228
Academia: same pressures, same conditions of work?……Page 249
Disciples, discipline and reflection: anthropological encounters and trajectories……Page 269
Afterword: accountabilityand ethnography……Page 292
Index……Page 318

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