A green drought : the challenge of mentoring for Australian accounting academics

Irvine, Helen J., Moerman, Lee, & Rudkin, Kathy (2010) A green drought : the challenge of mentoring for Australian accounting academics. Accounting Research Journal, 23(2), pp. 146-171.

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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to expose the impact of the shortage of senior academics,particularly professors, in Australian accounting schools, to relate the way one school addressed this shortage through a mentoring scheme, and to challenge existing institutional arrangements.----------- Design/methodology/approach: This is a contextualised qualitative case study of a mentoring scheme conducted in an Australian accounting school. Data collected from semi-structured interviews, personal reflections and from Australian university web sites are interpreted theoretically using the metaphor of a “green drought”.---------- Findings: The mentoring scheme achieved some notable successes, but raised many issues and challenges. Mentoring is a multifaceted investment in vocational endeavour and intellectual infrastructure, which will not occur unless creative means are developed over the long term to overcome current and future shortages of academic mentors.---------- Research limitations/implications: This is a qualitative case study, which, therefore, limits its generalisability. However, its contextualisation enables insights to be applied to the wider academic environment. ----------Practical implications: In the Australian and global academic environment, as accounting professors retire in greater numbers, new and creative ways of mentoring will need to be devised. The challenge will be to address longer term issues of academic sustainability, and not just to focus on short-term academic outcomes.---------- Originality/value: A mentoring scheme based on a collegial networking model of mentoring is presented as a means of enhancing academic endeavour through a creative short-term solution to a shortage of accounting professors. The paper exemplifies the theorising power of metaphor in a qualitative study.

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ID Code: 38946
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: The authors acknowledge, with appreciation, the funding from the Commerce Faculty at the
University of Wollongong, which made possible the mentoring scheme, and, in consequence, this
paper. They are also grateful to the five mentees who participated in the scheme, to the mentor,
to all the people who shared their insights through interviews and to the anonymous reviewers of
this paper
Keywords: Mentoring, Accountancy, Academic staff, Australia, Schools, Qualitative research, Metaphors, HERN
DOI: 10.1108/10309611011073241
ISSN: 1030-9616
Subjects: 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
Current > Schools > School of Accountancy
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Deposited On: 30 Nov 2010 21:21
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2014 04:59

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