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An investigation into the impact the new “Protected Disclosures Act 2014” will have on individual’s working in Big Four Firms in Ireland inclination towards Whistle Blowing or making Protected Disclosures upon uncovering a misdemeanour in the workplace

Long, Ben (2016) An investigation into the impact the new “Protected Disclosures Act 2014” will have on individual’s working in Big Four Firms in Ireland inclination towards Whistle Blowing or making Protected Disclosures upon uncovering a misdemeanour in the workplace. Masters thesis, Dublin, National College of Ireland.

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Abstract

It can be said that the financial industry is notoriously opaque due to the complex financial products and services that organisations provide, (Acharya et al, 2009; Claessens et al, 2010). This fact often makes it very difficult for outsiders to be able to identify or even become aware of issues or misdemeanours within companies. With this in mind, recently, scholars have realised the importance of whistle blowers in corporate governance. Prior to being announced to the public via the media, every corporate scandal has had some insiders aware of something in their respective company being amiss. Whistle blowers have earlier and better information about the most heinous type of corporate fraud as they are usually insiders, (Rapp, et al, 2010).

This investigation aims to uncover if the introduction of the “Protected Disclosures Act 2014” will encourage employees working in the professional services sector, specifically in Management and Accountancy companies based in Ireland to come forward and “blow the whistle” if they are aware of a corporate misdemeanour within their organisation, or will it affect their decision making process at all? We will look at those already working in management and accounting consulting firms specifically those working in “big four” organisations (KMPG, PWC, EY, Deloitte). The investigation will take place by means of qualitative interview with members of various organisations. The interview locations will have to differ in order to suit the participant and their work schedule. This investigation will take place over a six week period from June to mid-July. This topic of investigation was chosen due to the investigator having a predisposed interest in the Protected Disclosures Act 2014, and it was desired to uncover how the act would potentially influence or encourage potential whistle blowers to come forward and make a disclosure.

Through investigation it has been found that the Protected Disclosures Act does have an effect on the individual’s inclination towards whistle blowing. But for the most part it is ever so slightly. Through the use of qualitative research via the interview of 15 workers in Big Four firms it was found that The Protected Disclosures Act 2014 does not increase workers inclination to the point whereby they would one hundred per cent make a disclosure. It can be said that respondents can be divided into three groups. The first; individuals who were totally unreceptive to the Act and showed a total attitude of apathy towards the entire Act, this group did not feel any inclination towards making a disclosure whatsoever. The second; those who did recognise the Act was a positive thing, but also were of the belief that it did not go far enough in protecting them, this combined with their insecurity of position meant that they too were only slightly more inclined to make a disclosure, this group did not believe that they would make a disclosure in the given situation. Finally, the group who were most receptive were also the smallest. This group wanted more information on the Act, they wanted to know exactly how it worked, and who it effected. This group became much more inclined towards making a disclosure. It should be noted though that although they were much more inclined, not one member of this groupsaid that they would definitely make a disclosure, only that they were more inclined to do so.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > Large Industry. Corporations. > Corporate Governance
H Social Sciences > HG Finance > Financial Management
Divisions: School of Business > Master of Arts in Human Resource Management
Depositing User: CAOIMHE NI MHAICIN
Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2016 10:43
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2016 10:43
URI: http://trap.ncirl.ie/id/eprint/2286

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