6. Division of Accounting

Accounting is possibly the most centrally important feature for economic data representation for both microeconomics and macroeconomics. It is the way in which much of the world views economic data, yet it is often treated as a poor relation of academic economics.

6.1 A history of the evolution of economic record keeping including bookkeeping and inventory listing leads naturally into the development of business accounts through to the formalization of double entry book keeping by Fra Paccioli in 1494.

6.2 A detailed display is to be provided on the professionalization of accounting in the United States together with the development of the structure of its institutions including the role of the FASB and the central aspect of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP).

6.3 An appropriate expository display is called for to illustrate the emergence of different basic accounting uses for financial, cost and tax accounting.

6.4 The abstract aspects of accounting as data representation and information processing require illustration. This leads naturally into the relationship between accounting and formal mathematical methods.

6.5 National income accounting forms a related but different topic. The history of national income accounting together with its important sociopolitical role in defining many indices on which politico-economic decisions are based must be covered.

6.6 Not-for-profit accounting: In a world with many different levels of public goods and not-for-profit institutions the socioeconomic health of institutions becomes hard to measure. Especially when considerations are given to waste disposal, pollution and many other accounting systems where the profit or goal achievement measures are not straightforward and cannot easily be reduced to a single monetary benefit number. The problems and principles of not for profit accounting become critical to explain to the public the economic basis of public goods.

6.7 A special display on the creation and political-economy of economic indices is projected. The politics and economics of index creation. This provides a display on the role of one-number indices; their use in every -day-life and their relationship to social accounting. In particular who creates the indices.

6.8 An exhibit on accounting problems, swindles and the stock market--problems in accrual and timing. Problems in reporting and ownership (proprietor, partner, corporate) form.

6.9 Accounting games for your income tax ( linked to household econ)----what sort of tax advice do you need at what income level and when should you look for it?

6.10 Accounting and incentive systems.