From Accounting to Accountability: A Centenary of the Australian National Audit Office

Wanna, John, Ryan, Christine M., & Ng, Chew (2001) From Accounting to Accountability: A Centenary of the Australian National Audit Office. Allen and Unwin, Crows Nest, NSW.


The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) celebrates the centenary of Federation with its own centenary. The Audit Act 1901 was the fourth piece of legislation to be enacted by the Commonwealth Parliament, and so recognised the importance of the audit function in our system of democratic government. This act gave Australians the right to expect 'the fullest control of those who have to deal with the receipt and expenditure of our money.' The office that the act created, and its chief officer, the auditor-general, serve as the people's champion in safeguarding against fraud, corruption and waste, whether practised by officials or parliamentarians, or by citizens or interest groups against government.

From Accounting to Accountability was commissioned by the ANAO to record the history of the first 100 years of its operation. The book is divided into two parts. The first provides a chronological coverage, highlighting four major eras in the ANAO's development: the formation years to World War I; the impact of war and crises from 1915 to 1936; the onset of World War II and the challenges of postwar reconstruction; and the adoption of new roles and responsibilities in the 1980s and 1990s.

The second part focuses on four areas of special interest to the auditing of public finances in democratic nations. The first explores evolving practices adopted in financial statement auditing over the century; the second traces the emergence and development of performance auditing from the late 1970s; the third examines the relationships between the ANAO and its major stakeholders; and the final section considers the degree to which the office can maintain its independence.

In this lively and accessible history, the actors in the story of the ANAO are given full voice. The authors have allowed them to present, in their own words, the issues that concerned them and the roles they played.

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ID Code: 9616
Item Type: Book
Additional Information: Out of Print - No longer available to order
Additional URLs:
ISBN: 186508672
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2001 Allen and Urwin
Deposited On: 19 Sep 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2011 18:11

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