A Blueprint for Minimizing Audit Anticipation Gap in a Developing Country: Stakeholders Perceptions

Dina Ahmed Mohamed Ghandour


Purpose: This paper provides a blueprint for minimizing Audit Anticipation Gap (AAG) in a developing country. The focus was on exploring the occurrence, causes, and consequent effects of the Audit Anticipation Gap in Sudan, by identifying the possible factors that contribute to that gap. This was achieved by surveying the opinions of practicing external auditors, key users of financial statements, and accounting educators.

Research Design/Methodology/Approach: A qualitative research approach was adopted through a cross-sectional survey, using in-depth face-to-face structured personal interviews. Furthermore, purposive/judgmental sampling was utilized to select interviewees. Twenty-nine interviews were carried out, and their responses were analyzed using thematic content analysis.

Major Findings: The findings did indicate that an Audit Anticipation Gap exists in Sudan due to a weak and undeveloped accounting and auditing profession in the country, ambiguity concerning auditor’s independence, lack of external auditor rotation in the majority of the financial sectors, rendering both audit and non-audit services, absence of rules and regulations that govern external audit practices. Furthermore, major contributing factors included misunderstanding the objectives of auditing, the audit process, and the auditor’s roles and responsibilities by key users of financial statements.

Practical Implications: The study provided a wide range of findings that have significant implications for policy making geared toward minimizing the Audit Anticipation Gap in the country, so that accounting will play its proper role in its sustainable economic development.

Originality/Value: This study contributes to the existing literature by providing detailed and comprehensive findings from a region that has gained little focus on the subject matter. Specifically, it has shed light on the weaknesses of the accounting and auditing profession in Sudan, with a particular emphasis on the Audit Anticipation Gap. Thus, by surveying the viewpoints of the key stakeholders, the study provided prescriptions for turning around the accounting profession in the country to a potential world-class status.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/ijba.v14n1p20

International Journal of Business Administration
ISSN 1923-4007(Print) ISSN 1923-4015(Online)


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