2013 | 2013(71(127)) | 99-123
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Trends and research methods in the science of accounting in Poland and worldwide

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Accounting is seen as both a practical activity with a long tradition, as well as a scientific discipline, despite the fact that there were voices among scientists (Demski, 2007; Fellingham, 2007) that challenge the academic nature of this subject. The article attempts to answer the question to what extent the trends and research methods used in accounting are adequate for the social sciences. Another objective of this article is to verify to what extent research in the flied of accounting carried out in Poland is consistent with global trends in this discipline. To achieve these goals a descriptive comparative analysis of major trends in accounting research and the methods used was conducted, based on literature studies. The litera-ture studies included publications qualified for the EAA congress and articles published in national col-lective works and in ZTR journal for the period 2010–2012. Analysis conducted by the authors indicates that Polish accounting literature focuses on the valuation and regulations in accounting and on „pure theory”, e.g. balance sheet theories. Accounting research in Poland is still dominated by the descriptive method based on literature analysis, the surveys method and case studies method, while in Europe more common is empirical research based on secondary data using methods of statistical hypothesis testing. Despite some differences in the research methods in Polish and European publications on accounting a positive trend can be observed, which shows an increased interest among Polish scientists to use more complex research methodology. In addition, the authors’ analysis revealed that the in accounting, as in other social sciences, there exists pluralism of trends and research methods, which is a characteristic feature of social sciences.
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