Best Paper Award

At the beginning of each year, the editor of the AHJ chooses a recipient of the Best Paper Award from the previous year's journals. The recipient(s) receives a plaque and a check for $300. The editor also selects two recipient(s) for Awards of Excellence, these recipients receive a check for $100.

First Place: Plaque and $300
Award for Excellence: $100
Award for Excellence: $100

Congratulations to the 2018 Recipient!

Maria Ryabova (Lomonosov Moscow State University)

“The Account Books of the Soranzo Fraterna (Venice 1406-1434) and their Place in the History of Bookkeeping”

(Accounting Historians Journal, June 2018)


In the study, Ryabova contributes to the study of the accounting and legal practice existing in the Venetian Republic in the late Middle Ages through the examination of  two account books created by the Soranzo Fraterna, a trading firm organized as a family partnership and operating in the first half of the 15th century. The larger of the surviving ledgers, known as the libro real novo, is generally considered to be the earliest extant Venetian example of double-entry bookkeeping. New sources discovered by the author in the State Archives of Venice confirm that the libro real novo represents a compilation of accounts (a so-called estratto) prepared in view of a complicated litigation at the giudici di petizion court. The detailed examination of the judicial conflict in question reveals the purposes behind the composition of this book and the impact that the circumstances of its creation had on the accounting techniques used.


Maria Ryabova is a researcher in the Faculty of History at Lomonosov Moscow State University. She graduated with honors in history from Lomonosov Moscow State University in 2011. In 2012, Maria completed a 3-month research internship exchange program at the University of Padua (Italy). In 2014-2018, she was part of the research team for the project “The Greater Black Sea Area and the Mediterranean World in the System of Relations between Rus’, the East, and the West in the Middle Ages”, supported by the Russian Science Foundation and directed by Professor Sergey P. Karpov. Maria’s research interests include history of the Venetian Republic, economic history of the Mediterranean and the Black Sea region in the Late Middle Ages, and accounting history.

Awards for Excellence:

Stephen A. Zeff (Rice University)

"An Introduction to Corporate Accounting Standards: Detecting Paton's and Littleton's Influences"

(Accounting Historians Journal, June 2018)


Past Recipients of the Award:


2017     Frances Miley (University of Sussex) and Andrew Read (University of Sussex) - “Choreography of the Past: Accounting and the Writing of Christine de Pizan”


2016     Stephen Zeff (Rice University) - "Accounting Textbooks as Change Agents:  Finney’s Intermediate and Finney and Miller’s Intermediate from 1934 to 1958"

2015     Martin Persson (Western University) and Christopher Napier (Royal Holloway, University of London) - “R. J. Chambers and the AICPA’s Postulates and Principles Controversy: A Case of Vicarious Action”

2014     Richard Fleischman (Emeritus, John Carroll University), Thomas Tyson (St. John Fisher College), and David Oldroyd-McCollum (Durham University) - "The U.S. Freedman's Bureau in Post Civil War Reconstruction" 

2013     Dale L. Flesher, University of Mississippi and Gary J. Previts, Case Western Reserve University - "Donaldson Brown (1885-1965):  The Power of an Individual and His Ideas Over Time."

2012     Jacques Richard, University Paris Dauphine - “The Victory of the Prussian Railway Dynamic Accounting Over the Public Finance and Patrimonial Accounting Models (1838-1884): An Early Illustration of the Appearance of the Second State of Capitalist Financial Accounting and a Testimony Against the Agency and the Market for Excuses Theories"

2011     Jesse Dillard, Portland State University and Linda Ruchala, University of Nebraska-Lincoln -  “Veblen’s Placebo Another Historical Perspective on Administrative Evil”

2010     Warwick Funnell, University of Kent - “On His Majesty’s Secret Service: Accounting for the Secret Service in a Time of National Peril 1782-1806”

2009     Norman B. Macintosh, Queen’s University - “Effective Genealogical History: Possibilities for Critical Accounting History Research”

2008     Valerio Antonelli, Università degli Studi di Salerno, Trevor Boyns, Cardiff Business School and Fabrizio Cerbioni, University of Padua - “The Development of Accounting in Europe in the Era of Scientific Management: The Italian Engineering Conglomerate, Ansaldo, 1918 – 1940”

2007     Charles W. Wootton, Eastern Illinois University and Barbara E. Kemmerer, Eastern Illinois University -  “The Emergence of Mechanical Accounting in the U.S., 1880 – 1930”

2006     Richard K. Fleischman, John Carroll University and Thomas Tyson, St. John Fisher College - “Accounting for Interned Japanese-American Civilians during World War II: Creating Incentives and Establishing Controls for Captive Workers”

2005     Fernando Gutiérrez, Carlos Larrinaga and Miriam Núñez - “Cost and Management Accounting in Pre-Industrial Revolution Spain”

2005     Sarah A. Holmes, Sandra T. Welch and Laura R. Knudson - “The Role of Accounting Practices in the Disempowerment of the Coahuiltecan Indians”

2004     Warwick Funnell - “Accounting and the Pursuit of Utopia: The Possibility of Perfection in Paraguay”

2003     Richard K. Fleischman and R. Penny Marquette - “The Impact of World War II on Cost Accounting at the Sperry Corporation”

2002     Alan J. Richardson - “Professional Dominance:  The Relationship Between Financial Accounting and Managerial Accounting”


Letter from the President

This is an exciting time for the Academy as we leverage our successful past to expand our reach as a 21st century global organization.

We have substantially completed the transition from a standalone entity during early 2018 and we are now operating as a section within the American Accounting Association (AAA). A transition team has worked diligently since late 2015 to transfer the operations and dedicated resources of the Academy of Accounting Historians to a section within the AAA structure and we were welcomed at the AAA Centennial meeting in August 2016 as the newest section of the AAA.

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Accounting Historians Journal

First volume was published in 1974. We publish twice a year. Older volumes are available online at AAA Digital Library

Overview of acceptable submissions:

  • History of profession
  • Biography
  • History of accounting change
  • Entity case studies: industries, companies, governmental or NFP entities
  • Development of accounting theory
  • Critical examinations of new or old research
  • Does not have to be old to be a part of our history

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Accounting Historians Notebook

Submissions and any other Notebook editorial matters may be sent to Tiffany Schwendeman, Academy Administrator, at:

The April 2020 Accounting Historian's Notebook is now available online!

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