Methodological reflections on historical case study and interpretive accounting research

Dominic Detzen*, Sebastian Hoffmann

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Commenting on our study “Accountability and ideology: The case of a German university under the Nazi regime", published in 2020 in Accounting History, Fülbier recently outlined a research agenda on the manifold ways in which the Nazi doctrine affected institutions of higher education, going beyond the scope of our original article. With this reply, we seek to reflect on research considerations emanating from such an agenda, relating to (i) conducting historical case-based research, (ii) questions of ontology and epistemology in interpretive accounting research, and (iii) the notion of what constitutes accounting in a specific research context. We hope that our reply, along with Fülbier’s commentary, inspires further research on accounting’s role in totalitarian regimes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-675
Number of pages11
JournalAccounting History
Issue number4
Early online date27 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship and/or publication of this article.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2021.


  • accountability
  • accounting history
  • case study research
  • Germany
  • interpretive research
  • methodology
  • Nazism

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