09 December 2015

A Body of Knowledge passé?

Several decades back, CMA Canada was doing extensive work in analyzing and compiling best practices for management accounting, and established the CMA Canada Research Foundation to focus on that work. In addition to commissioning various studies, it also issued the Management Accountants Handbook and Management Accounting Practices Handbook for CMAs to abide by. They're quite prominent in my library.

I was recently wondering what is happening to that focus, now that all CMAs, CAs and CGAs are now part of CPA Canada. It turns out that notice was given in 2013 that the Foundation intended to surrender its charter. That has not happened yet, but it appears that it will lapse because of non-continuance under the Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act.

That's not all. The Handbooks themselves have never been updated since 1998, although electronic copies of the contents were always available from the CMA Canada website. That site is no longer available, and the new CPA Canada Store does not have access to them.

That's a pity. There was a lot of great advice that came out of this work, and much of the research was seminal in developing management accounting as we know it today. One study in particular, A Practical Approach to the Appraisal of Capital Expenditures, deserves to be updated to cover today's broader range of issues.

I hope CPA Canada revives access to this work. Otherwise, it would appear that our amalgamation was in reality a takeover.

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