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Power and knowledge in the Agricultural Lending Division of the Fiji Development Bank

Deo, Hemant & Irvine, Helen J. (2006) Power and knowledge in the Agricultural Lending Division of the Fiji Development Bank. Asian Review of Accounting, 14(1/2), pp. 66-82.

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Abstract

Purpose of the paper: This paper exposes the gap between rationalist banking theory and actual practice within the Agricultural Lending Division of the Fiji Development Bank (FDB) by focusing on the inter-relationship between power and knowledge.
Design/methodology/approach: Data for this qualitative research project was gathered from archived documents, interviews, observation and reflection. A Foucauldian theoretical framework was used, which acknowledged the impact of social, economic and political factors within the bank’s historical context. Findings: In practice non-rationalist factors play a vital role in decision making and the development of mechanisms of accountability within the FDB. The bank’s policies and procedures have ultimately had to strike a delicate balance between the Fijian government’s development goals, profitability requirements and the formal rationalities of new public management, and the cultural realities of agricultural lending in Fiji’s traditional community-oriented society. Research implications: This study refutes a merely technocratic approach to banking research, opening up possibilities for further studies which focus on power within a socio-historic context. Practical implications: The findings of this study challenge banks to acknowledge the subjectivity of their lending processes and to improve the accountability of lending officers. Original/value of the paper: This paper demonstrates the credibility and usefulness of a theoretically driven qualitative research study in making visible issues that would otherwise be hidden.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 13048
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Fiji Development Bank, Foucault, lending processes, power and knowledge, theory and practice, disciplinary surveillance
DOI: 10.1108/13217340610729473
ISSN: 1321-7348
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > BANKING FINANCE AND INVESTMENT (150200) > Banking Finance and Investment not elsewhere classified (150299)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > ACCOUNTING AUDITING AND ACCOUNTABILITY (150100) > Accounting Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified (150199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 Emerald Publishing
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 19 Mar 2008
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:42

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