The South African Institute of Professional Accountants (SAIPA) held its 2020 Accounting iNdaba on the 4th and 5th of November.
At the end of the first day, the Institute recognised the winners of its Accounting and Tax Thesis Competition. The contest has been held annually for over ten years to recognise outstanding research in the fields of accounting and taxation.
According to Shahied Daniels, Chief Executive of SAIPA, the administrative duties of accountants and tax practitioners are being assumed by automated processes in the wake of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Because of this, they will be increasingly drawn towards strategic advisory services.
“It is more important than ever to promote an increase in the volume and quality of research being carried out,” said Daniels. “This will ensure that these professions are informed by cutting edge thought leadership in their new roles.”
The following winners were awarded for their outstanding accounting thesis:
In the PhD category, Cara van der Merwe of the University of South Africa for Towards the Development of a Corporate Community Involvement Disclosures Framework: Evidence from South Africa. Cara’s supervisor was Professor Christa Wingard.
In the Masters category, Rudolf Mfundo Mbwanja of the University of KwaZulu-Natal for Perceptions of Accountants and Auditors on Professional Ethics and Professional Skepticism in South Africa. He was supervised by Professor Mabutho Sibanda.
In the Honours category, Ryan Stevens of the University of Cape Town for Commercial Bank Reaction to Repo Rate Changes by the South African Reserve Bank. His supervisor was Mr. Carlos de Jesus.
The accounting thesis awards were presented by Faith Ngwenya, Technical and Standards Executive at SAIPA.
“We are very pleased with the standard of work produced by these outstanding researchers and believe their contributions will do much to improve the field of accountancy,” said Ngwenya.
For the tax thesis, the winners were as follows:
In the PhD category, Roshelle Ramfol of the University of Pretoria for Taxation of the Extractive Industry in the Context of Contemporary International Fiscal Regimes: Lessons for South Africa. Roshelle’s supervisor was Professor RCD Frazen.
In the Masters category, Frances Burger of Stellenbosch University for Third Party Appointments in South African Tax Law: A Comparison with South African Civil Procedure Law and a Constitutional Review. Frances was supervised by Professor Linda van Heerden.
In the Honours category, Tanya Lizanne Pienaar of the University of Cape Town for Wealth Erosion of the Middle Class and Taxation Levied on Life Insurance Policies. Her supervisors were Mr. Rudi Oosthuizen and Mrs. Tracy Johnson.
The tax thesis awards were presented by Ettiene Retief, the Institute’s Chairman of the National Tax and SARS Committee.
“It’s hard to believe that the quality of research in the field of tax could improve on previous years, but these winners have proved that the bar is never too high. Well done,” said Retief.
Accounting and economy
Daniels said the thesis competition has far reaching effects. “We believe that encouraging more and better research in accounting and taxation correlates closely with positive economic growth,” he says.
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