Researching the lived experience of corporate governance

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


This literature review seeks to engage with the discussion of the limitations of studying corporate governance processes as a “black box” by developing a theoretical framework for qualitative corporate governance research that can support the design of future hermeneutic research into corporate governance practices. The approach is to develop a qualitative research framework based on the methodological discussions in the business and sociology literatures, and compare it with existing alternative research frameworks in the corporate governance literature and three qualitative field studies in corporate governance. This paper identifies methodological gaps that have made it difficult for extant qualitative studies of corporate governance to capture the complexity of the practices they have studied. This paper suggests three main implications for future qualitative corporate governance research: it should seek to articulate the multiple meanings of corporate governance rules, techniques, and processes as they arise in practice in order to facilitate a better discussion of the complexity of corporate governance practices; it should reflect on the role of the researcher in the field and his/her interactions with the subjects because through those interactions the multiple meanings of practice can be detected by the researcher; it should seek to articulate how the authors of research papers choose the contexts in which they place their observations from the field and how they variously zoom in and out of their fields of study to foreground either local detail or the wider contexts. Through a close reading of alternative corporate governance research frameworks and qualitative studies this paper explains how future scholarly and practical corporate governance research can produce insights into the lived experience of corporate governance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-30
Number of pages27
JournalQualitative Research in Accounting & Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 5 2013


  • Conceptual framework
  • Corporate governance
  • Methodology
  • Qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Accounting


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