The three pillars of institutional theory and IFRS implementation in Nigeria


Osinubi, I. 2020. The three pillars of institutional theory and IFRS implementation in Nigeria. Journal of Accounting in Emerging Economies. 10 (4), pp. 575-599.
AuthorsOsinubi, I.

This study explores the effects of the three pillars of institutional theory in shaping the activities of institutional entrepreneurs and other social actors during IFRS implementation in Nigeria.
This study uses document analysis method to achieve the objectives of the study.
This study finds that IFRS implementation in Nigeria witnessed some progression from regulative to normative to cognitive pillar building. The regulation on IFRS implementation was initiated top-down rather than through lobbying from professional accounting bodies and the public. Changes in the regulatory framework brought some improvement to corporate financial reporting practices such as the timing of corporate filings of audited financial reports. However, the implementation process is laden with conflicts and power struggle among institutional actors. These conflicts and power struggles led the President of Nigeria to sack the Board of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC), the reconstitution of the Board and appointment of a Chairman for the Board of the FRC.
IFRS implementation process resulted in power redistribution among institutional actors, which led to resistance, tensions, and conflicts among institutional actors. The conflicts arise from the need of actors to legitimate their activities and secure their positions. The three institutional pillars are key components of a change process and the actor’s social position affects their capability to act as an institutional entrepreneur. This finding should provide foundational knowledge that will inform practitioners, researchers, and regulators in developing countries on how institutional actors shape the approach to corporate reporting regulations.

KeywordsInstitutional theory; institutional entrepreneurs; IFRS implementation; regulatory change; institutional actors; legitimacy; Nigeria
JournalJournal of Accounting in Emerging Economies
Journal citation10 (4), pp. 575-599
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
Accepted author manuscript
File Access Level
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Publication dates
Online27 Aug 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted12 Aug 2020
Deposited13 Aug 2020
Copyright holder© 2020 Emerald Publishing Limited
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