Digital Accounting, Finance, and Tax

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Group leader
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Digital and Sustainable Accounting and Finance Research Group
Specific themes and goals
  • Disclosure and audit regulation — In a research project with Prof. Dr. Devrimi Kaya from Ruhr University Bochum in Germany, we examined the communicative value of extended auditor reports in the United Kingdom. By using innovative methods from computational linguistics, we found that communicative values improve in response to new auditor reporting requirements. Cross-sectional tests showed that the improvement differs across audit firms and audit clients. Importantly, we found initial evidence that a more specific reporting of auditors is significantly and positively associated with capital market reactions. This suggests that investors value precise information by the auditor. In a follow-up project, we examined how the auditors’ reports evolve over time. 
  • Sustainability and diversity — With researchers from Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, we investigated the impact of board gender diversity on risk reporting by UK companies. By applying sophisticated two-stage estimation procedures, we accounted for the endogeneity risk typically inherent in such diversity studies. We found that board gender diversity is positively related to corporate risk disclosure. However, our results also indicated that the proportion of female directors needs to reach a critical level to impact the decision to disclose Brexit-related risks. Collectively, our results show that board gender diversity promotes the disclosure of decision-relevant information through improved board group dynamics. In a follow-up project, we are investigating the potential multiplier effects resulting from FüPoG II in Germany. 
  • Evidence-based optimisation of accounting and management education — We also research the evidence-based optimisation of accounting and management education. For instance, we published a study together with Robin Wolter (a former student and teaching assistant at Constructor University) which investigated the impact of accounting and finance courses on student founding teams. Our empirical results provide valuable input for teaching and course composition. In addition, we developed new teaching approaches and scientifically monitored their effectiveness. Finally, we used innovative approaches based on machine learning and artificial intelligence to screen the existing literature for relevant topics.
Highlights and impact
  • Our rigorous research has been published in renowned journals such as Journal of Business Ethics, European Accounting Review, and Journal of Accounting and Organizational Change. Moreover, it has been recognized by a series of awards, for instance from the ACCA Research Symposium at the University of St. Gallen.
  • Aside from our international research activities in Accounting, Finance, and Tax, we are also involved in the startup community at Constructor University.
  • We also have a strong publication record related to German practice-oriented research in the fields of accounting, finance, auditing, and tax.
Group composition & projects/funding

The Digital Accounting, Finance, and Tax research group was founded in 2022 and currently consists of Prof. Seebeck, one postdoctoral researcher, one PhD candidate, and five student assistants. We are carrying out research projects in Sustainable Finance and Tax with renowned researchers from leading universities, such as FAU Nuremberg and the University of St. Gallen. The research is funded by Stiftung Innovation in der Hochschullehre, Stiftung Prof. Dr. oec. Westerfelhaus, and several partners from industry.

Selected publications
  • Seebeck, A., Kaya, D. 2022. The Power of Words: An Empirical Analysis of the Communicative Value of Extended Auditor Reports, European Accounting Review. 
  • Seebeck, A., Vetter, J. 2022. Not Just a Gender Numbers Game — How Board Gender Diversity Affects Corporate Risk Disclosure, Journal of Business Ethics. 
  • Seebeck, A., Wolter, R. 2022. Financial Education of Founders, is it important? A case study of Jacobs Startup Competition, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing. 
  • Lutz F., Seebeck A. 2020. OECD veröffentlicht aktualisierte Guidance zum Country-by-Country Reporting, Internationales Steuerrecht. 
  • Kaya, D., Seebeck, A. 2019. The dissemination of firm information via company register websites — Country level empirical evidence, Journal of Accounting and Organizational Change.