Auditors have a big role in society. The question of auditor independence has been debated frequently after the financial crisis. Long auditor tenure with clients has both advantages and disadvantages so the question is hard to solve.
One of the traits that are encouraged with auditors is professional skepticism. An important part of professional skepticism is the personal skepticism of the auditor. The purpose of this dissertation is to investigate if a high professional skepticism can increase auditor independence by increasing profession identification and decreasing client identification. Earlier research in Social Identity Theory has shown that client identification is negatively related to auditor independence and that profession identification is positively related to auditor independence.
A quantitative method is used in this dissertation. A survey was sent to 1000 qualified Swedish auditor. 273 of those replied. The material was statistically analyzed to test the different hypothesis in the dissertation. Our survey showed that professional skepticism has no relation to client- and profession identification. There is however a weak positive relation between professional skepticism and auditor independence. The conclusion is that more research is needed to investigate if auditor independence really is affected by the auditor ’s professional skepticism.
|Date of Award||2012-Aug-24|
|Supervisor||Jan Svanberg (Supervisor) & Timurs Umans (Examiner)|
- Degree of Bachelor of Science in Business and Economics
- 15 HE credits
Swedish Standard Keywords
- Business Administration (50202)
- professional skepticism
- social identity theory
- client identification
- profession identification
- auditor independence