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Perceptions of Muslim Accounting Academicians
By :
Rizal Yaya
Muhammadiyah University of Yogyakarta – Indonesia
Shahul Hameed bin Mohd. Ibrahim
International Islamic University Malaysia

The quest for the objectives and characteristics of Islamic accounting has become a major concern among Islamic accounting writers. However, Islamic accounting theory has not been tested under different cultural contexts. This research, therefore, aims to extend previous research by exploring the consensus among Indonesian Muslim accounting academicians in Yogyakarta on the objectives and characteristics of Islamic accounting. Based on the statistical tests applied in this research, it is found that the Muslim accounting academicians in Yogyakarta have a strong consensus on some principles which can be used later as a basis for developing Islamic accounting.  

Perceptions of Muslim Accounting Academicians
1. Introduction
Wolk and Tearney (1997) state that the diversity of users has been the main obstacle in determining the objectives of accounting. Even within a group of users there is also extensive diversity. Different objectives would also exist in societies other than the capitalist society where conventional accounting was developed. In a socialist society, for example, the objective of accounting is to strengthen the control of the central authorities over the activities of an enterprise (Bailey, 1988). Consequently, in the design of the standardized accounting systems, the central authorities are regarded as the primary users of the information to be generated rather than the capital provider as in the capitalist society (Bailey, 1988). The reason for this different accounting is explained by Hameed (2001) in that a different worldview and values give rise to a different economic system and thus need different accounting systems which are consistent with that system. Baydoun & Willet (2000) reveal that there are some principles underlying conventional accounting. They are; firstly, clear separation from economic intercourse with religious considerations; secondly, the paramount importance of individual satisfaction; thirdly, profit maximization as the gauge of successful performance; fourthly, acceptance of the rule of the survival of the fittest as the best strategy and, finally, focus on the result of the process without regard for its wider impact on the environment. These principles in the researchers’ opinion, are just like the principles in a belief system of either an individual or society. Islam, however, has its own worldview and belief system. It is not only a ritualistic religion confined to the individual but an integrated way of life combining politics, economics, culture, religion and every aspect of human life (Haneef, 1997). This means that any separation of knowledge from religious guidance is not appropriate for Muslims as it would result in non-Islamic behavior (Hameed, 2001). Therefore, many Muslim scholars have suggested that the accounting discipline and practices need to be integrated with Islamic teachings and this is hereafter termed Islamic accounting (see Hameed, 2000).             Hameed (2000) has conducted an extensive study on the perceptions of Malaysian Muslim accountants and accounting academicians on the objectives and characteristics of Islamic accounting. He reveals that there is a positive acceptance by the Malaysian Muslim accountants and accounting academicians towards Islamic values in accounting. However, in the Sulaiman’s (1998) survey on the accountants in Malaysia, it is found that Muslims and non-Muslims are no different in their perceptions on the accounting matter. Similar finding is also found in the extension of her research to the Muslim...
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