Evidence about the value of financial statement audit in the public sector

  • David Hay, Carolyn J. Cordery
  • Public Money & Management, February 2020, Taylor & Francis
  • DOI: 10.1080/09540962.2020.1729532

How can public sector audit be of value?

What is it about?

In this paper we summarise the explanations for why audit is demanded in the private sector. We apply these to the public sector and use examples from the New Zealand Supreme Audit Institution (Office of the Auditor-General) to show how audit is of value to stakeholders.

Why is it important?

There has been little research into public sector audit and very little in the way of explaining why pretty much every country has a Supreme Audit Institution. By applying private sector explanations for audit to empirical data, we hope to encourage more discussion on why public sector audit is valuable.


Professor Carolyn J Cordery
Aston University

This is the third paper in a series that David Hay and I developed from a research project within NZ's Supreme Audit Institution. Analysing such an important institution as public sector audit is proving to be fascinating, considering their role in accountability and in assisting public sector reform, to name two.

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor Carolyn J Cordery