A note on comparative language interrogation for content analysis : the example of English versus German

Shrives, Philip, Beck, Cornelia and Campbell, David J. (2005) A note on comparative language interrogation for content analysis : the example of English versus German. British Accounting Review, 37 (3). pp. 339-350. ISSN 0890-8389

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bar.2005.04.005


This paper raises and explores a number of issues relevant to the content analysis of voluntary disclosures in general but international content comparisons in particular. Using the example of voluntary environmental narratives in the annual reports of the top 30 British and German companies for the year ending 2002, content analysis was undertaken to determine the validity of volumetric comparison by recording word and sentence counts using both German and English translations of disclosures published by the German companies themselves. The study had two main outcomes. First, it found that the English rendering of German environmental narrative is generally accurate (suggesting that companies do not discriminate by reporting jurisdiction) and is most commonly, but not exclusively, translated at the coding resolution of the sentence. Second, the study concludes that German–English comparative international volumetric content analyses should be carried out using same language versions where possible due to differences in syntactic and textual renderings in the two languages yielding unrepresentative volumetric separation statistics.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This study is significant for researchers in the area of comparative accounting. It explains why it is important for the purposes of content analysis to use ‘same language’ versions in comparative studies. Researchers carrying out comparative work are likely to cite this paper.
Subjects: Q100 Linguistics
Department: Faculties > Business and Law > Newcastle Business School
Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 15 Aug 2008 11:39
Last Modified: 19 Nov 2019 09:54
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/3752

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