Publication Details

Nikidehaghani, M., Cortese, C. & Hui-Truscott, F. (2019). Accounting and pastoral power in Australian disability welfare reform. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Online First 1-15.


This paper draws on Foucault's concept of pastoral power to explore the role of accounting in the Australian disability welfare reform. We provide an example of the use of individualising and totalising power against a backdrop of neoliberal reform. Our analysis reveals the centrality of accounting practices in transforming the identity of people with disabilities into one consistent with the intentions of neoliberalism ideology. Our findings demonstrate that accounting practices associated with disability welfare reform have been integral in exercising pastoral power. We further demonstrate that accounting, as a technology of the self, facilitates individualising and totalising control and, through a perpetual extraction of truth, constructs an individual's conduct.

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