De Baerdemaeker, Jolien; Bruggeman, Werner (Management Accounting Research, 2015)
This study investigates the impact of participative strategic planning on managers' creation of budgetary slack. Specifically, we draw on self-determination and organisational commitment theory to examine whether and how the degree of managerial participation in strategic planning relates to the creation of budgetary slack. The hypotheses are empirically tested with survey data obtained from 247 managers in a cross-section of West-European organisations. The results from a structural equation model, with controls for budget participation and slack detection, suggest that increased participation in strategic planning leads to lower budgetary slack creation through the suggested path of heightened affective organisational commitment. In addition, the results indicate that budget participation decreases the creation of budgetary slack through the mediating effect of autonomous budget motivation, suggesting that both elements of the organisational planning process are related to the creation of budgetary slack. Our study contributes to the growing research exploring the interface between accounting and strategy by recognizing the importance of participative strategic planning for understanding managers' creation of budgetary slack.
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