2016 - Reprints: General and International Management

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Internal audits as a source of ethical behavior, efficiency, and effectiveness in work units, Journal of Business Ethics, 137(2), 347-363, 2016
Y. Ma'ayan and A. Carmeli
(Reprint No. 318)


This study of internal auditors and auditees, who engage in both financial and operational internal audits in Israel, extends theory and research on internal audits in organizational units. It develops and tests a model that examines the role of top management and internal auditors in facilitating learning from internal audits and driving perceived performance improvement. We argue that support from the top management for the internal audit as well as the auditor’s capacity (skills, resources, and behaviors) facilitate learning from audits and help audited units to improve ethicality, efficiency, and effectiveness in organizations. The results of time-lagged survey data provide general support for the hypothesized indirect relationships between auditor capacity, auditor–auditee relational exchanges, learning from audits, and three different perceived performance measures: ethical behavior, efficiency, and effectiveness. We discuss the implications for research on internal audits, proactive learning, ethics, and performance improvement of organizational units in the public sector.

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