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An Empirical Investigation of Fraud Risk Assessment and Knowledge Requirement on Fraud Related Problem Representation in Nigeria

Popoola, Oluwatoyin Muse Johnson and Che-Ahmad, Ayoib and Samsudin, Rose Shamsiah (2014): An Empirical Investigation of Fraud Risk Assessment and Knowledge Requirement on Fraud Related Problem Representation in Nigeria. Published in: Accounting Research Journal , Vol. 28, No. 1 (June 2015): pp. 78-97.


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The paper investigates Fraud Risk Assessment Task Performance (TPFRA) and Knowledge Requirement (KR) of the forensic accountant and auditor on Fraud Related Problem Representation (FRPR) in the Nigerian public sector.

The study used cross-sectional design and 400 Survey questionnaires. The respondents are real professional people (auditors and forensic accountants in the Nigerian public sector) as true representatives to enhance the generalisation of the outcomes. A total of 36 indicator items was measured on 5-point Likert Scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree). PLS-SEM 2.0 3M and IBM SPSS Statistics 20.0 were employed as the primary statistical analysis tool for the study.

The results of the present study confirm the positive relationship between KR on TPFRA, positive relationship of KR on FRPR, and positive relationship of FRPR and TPFRA. Specifically, the results revealed that FRPR positively mediates the relationship between TPFRA and KR (forensic accountant and auditor) in the areas of fraud prevention, detection and response.

The first limitation deals with fraud and corrupt practices in a developing country, Nigeria. Examining the mediating influence of FRPR on KR and TPFRA in the public sector could be considered as sensitive and raise the issue of bias. The second limitation is the adoption of cross-sectional design in which data are collected at one point in time. Researchers are encouraged to use a longitudinal design to explore interactions between KR, FRPR and TPFRA.

This empirical study has revealed the value of KR (forensic accountant and auditor) as a significant capability requirement in the workplace. In addition, it shows the importance of FRPR as an important mental state in decision-making or judgement and also the significance of FRPR as an important mediating variable on KR and TPFRA.

No nation is immune to fraud and loss due to fraud in the public sector is enormous and costly, the result of this research will improve the KR of auditors and forensic accountants in the areas of fraud detection, prevention and response. It will also contribute to the regulatory, legal and institutional frameworks in accounting and auditing systems in Nigeria and portend an increase in demand for forensic accountants.

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