Dr Michael Turner
Michael Turner
Senior Lecturer in Accounting
  • PhD, Management Accounting (Griffith University)
  • GCResMan, Research Management (Southern Cross University)
  • BBus (Hons), Accounting (Griffith University)
  • BBus, Accounting (Griffith University)
+61 7 334 68071
Room 444, Colin Clark Building, St. Lucia Campus

    Dr Michael James Turner completed his Ph.D. from Griffith University. He also holds a BBus (Hons 1) and Graduate Certificate in Research Management. Currently he is working as a tenured Lecturer in Accounting at The University of Queensland. His research interests are capital budgeting, ethics and fraud, earnings management, corporate governance and executive compensation. His teaching specialism is in both management accounting and financial accounting.

    Research interests

    Application of Choice methods and models in accounting research
    Dr Turner sees this stream of research as carrying a potentially significant impact on the way in which experimental accounting research is conducted. Dr Turner illustrates how discrete choice experiments can be used to simulate managerial accounting decision-making and choice and how models for discrete dependent variables can be applied to data. The reporting focuses on the importance of attributes studied and their economic valuation. Several choice models are fit to data with each imposing different behavioural assumptions, which include conditional logit and mixed logit models and factor-analytic and generalised factor-analytic choice models.
    Capital budgeting
    Dr Turner’s PhD thesis examined the capital budgeting practices of Australian and New Zealand hotels. One of the driving motivations in this research concerned the agency relationship arising in hotels mediated by a hotel management contract. In light of the agency relationship challenges between hotel owners and operators, Dr Turner examined several topics, which included: (1) deficiencies in owner-operator capital expenditure goal congruency; (2) accounting for the furniture, fittings and equipment reserve in hotels; (3) motivations of hotel owners and operators to engage in earnings management; (4) factors affecting biasing of capital budgeting cash flow forecasts; and (5) capital budgeting implications arising from locus of hotel owner/operator power.

    Following from his PhD studies, Dr Turner continues to specialise in capital budgeting research. Some of his ongoing work focuses on the value and importance of financial and non-financial information in capital budgeting as well as the effectiveness of post-audits in stemming opportunistic behaviour by agents.

    Corporate Governance
    Dr Turner’s research in this field focuses on both publicly listed companies and sporting organisations. In terms of publicly listed companies, Dr Turner’s current PhD supervisions see him focusing on drawing out peculiarities within the Australian reporting environment and examining ‘pro forma’ or ‘non-GAAP’ earnings. Factors making this an interesting area involve the adoption within Australia of a fair value reporting regime and the implementation of regulatory guidance imposing restrictions on the disclosure of non-IFRS financial information.
    Dr Turner’s second stream of research within this field sees him working collaboratively to examine deficiencies in the corporate governance practices of Australian sporting organisations. Several high-profile sporting clubs have experienced intense public scrutiny and been subject to sanctions as a result of such deficiencies. The objective of this research is to document the deficiencies and advance methods by which improvements can be made.
    Executive compensation
    A number of Dr Turner’s past RHD supervisions have involved in projects examining issues surrounding executive compensation and earnings management. Projects have focused elements such as the cash bonus component of CEO salary. For example, the use of non-financial performance measures, the extent to which the disclosure of cash bonus information is of high quality, and the extent to which the cash bonus is tied to subjective measures.
    The decision to blow the whistle is not easy and tends to be a function of many different organisational, personal and situational variables. When individuals are put in the same situation, some might blow the whistle while others may not. Individual differences may therefore be critical. Dr Turner has several ongoing collaborative research projects in this area. Each project focuses on the way in which individual differences can predict an individual’s propensity to blow the whistle.
    White-collar crime
    White-collar crime costs the global economy billions of dollars each year and is usually carried out within the areas of accounting fraud, asset misappropriation, bribery and corruption, and cybercrime. Despite several initiatives such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act cases of white-collar crime have continued. Dr Turner’s research focuses on an important question, “what exactly is the common denominator for individuals to commit white-collar crime?” Dr Turner has conducted research exploring the role of personality in predicting individual’s propensity to commit white-collar crime.


    View full publications list


    • Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand


    2005-2008 Australian Postgraduate Award (APA)
    2005-2008 Griffith Business School PhD Top-Up Scholarship
    2005-2008 Sustainable Tourism Cooperative Research Centre Supplementary Scholarship
    2005 Griffith University Medal for BBus Honours
    2003 Griffith Business School Honours Scholarship
    2000-2003 Griffith University Award for Academic Excellence
    2002 Outstanding Performance Award for Academic Excellence
    2001 McGraw-Hill Business Finance Award
    2001 Outstanding Performance Award for Academic Excellence
    2001 Lifetime Membership to Golden Key International Honour Society

    Major research grants

    Title Agency Year Amount
    Whistle-blowing regulation: A uniform or tailored approach? (with Esther Pitroff and Gladys Lee) The German Research Foundation 2016 $18,000
    Exploring the potential for human asset accounting in hotel management accounting (with Richard Robinson) The University of Queensland 2016 $1,000
    Determinants of the severity of consequences for organisations named in SEC Accounting and Auditing Enforcement Releases (with Jacqueline Birt) The University of Queensland 2016 $1,000
    Accounting for extractive operations: Disclosure issues in Australia (with Jacqueline Birt) The University of Queensland 2015 $1,000
    The effectiveness of governance mechanisms in sporting clubs: Perceptions of the stakeholders (with Tamara Zunker and Michael Turner) AFAANZ Research Grant 2015 $2,500
    Professional scepticism, judgement and decision-making: Developing an audit experiment (with Jacqueline Birt) The University of Queensland 2015 $3,000
    Scandals in Australian sporting clubs: Shortcomings in governance practices (with Jacqueline Birt) The University of Queensland 2014 $1,800
    Blowing the whistle: The impact of formal channels, anti-retaliation protection and financial rewards (with Paul Andon) AFAANZ Research Grant 2014 $4,000
    Blowing the whistle: The impact of formal channels, anti-retaliation protection and financial rewards (with Dr Paul Andon) Accounting & Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand (AFAANZ) 2014 $4,000
    An investigation of personality and whistle-blowing accounting fraud (with Professor Clinton Free & Dr Paul Andon) Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia 2014 $15,765
    UQ Teaching Development Grant The University of Queensland 2014 $1,500
    An investigation of performance evaluation and capital budgeting in Australian and New Zealand hotels. UQ New Staff Research Start-Up Grant 2009 $6,700