Premier Sponsors


This June 11-12, the AAA is taking meetings online with Spark!

Introducing Spark, our digital meeting format for academics and practicing accountants.

As you know, over the past few months we've had to cancel several meetings due to the spread of COVID-19. These decisions were not taken lightly, and we regret having had to do it, knowing these are valued and highly anticipated events for our community.

But while the pandemic has disrupted many of our daily patterns, it has also made us realize that the form of a meeting does not dictate its purpose, or its value. It has challenged us to find new ways to convene in order to support our scholarship and shape the future.

This first Spark meeting combines several region and section meetings into a digital experience that will meet you where you are and present you with some new opportunities to explore. We've designed and built a conference platform and a presentation gallery that lets you participate in sessions in a flexible and personalized way. It preserves the key elements of traditional AAA meetings, while augmenting it with more opportunities to engage with your colleagues.

The June 11-12 Spark Meeting will be held from 11:00 EDT to 6:15 EDT daily.  Each day will conclude with opportunities to catch up with colleagues at Block Parties held 6:15 EDT-7:15 EDT.


  • Access to a wider range of topics and sessions — 200 presentations that you can watch, in your own time
  • Live keynotes and sessions identified by segments with moderated Q&As
  • Section/Region Block Parties to unwind and catch up with colleagues and connect with your community
  • New ways to participate in section/region activities and contribute to the AAA's evolution
  • Up to 10 hours of CPE credits


  • Reach a wider, global audience
  • Presentations receive a DOI (digital object identifier) to increase discoverability and presence
  • Presentations will be displayed in a virtual gallery—available to more people for a longer time
  • Content is fully searchable, citable, and shareable
  • Authors retain the rights to their content
  • Office hours and tech support to help you prepare and feel confident
  • Segment Block Parties to unwind and catch up with colleagues

Spark won't be exactly the same as meetings we've hosted before, and we're excited about that. This is an opportunity to leverage the power of digital gatherings and improve on the traditional conference model. We're eager to take what we learn from this event and apply it to our future programming.

This will be a thoughtful experiment that we look forward to embarking on. We're optimistic that how we set ourselves up now will strengthen our community and celebrate and elevate the practice we're so passionate about. We hope you will join us.


President’s Invitation to the 2020 Annual Meeting

It is my honor to invite you to the 104th Annual Meeting of the American Accounting Association (AAA) to be held August 9-12, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia.  The theme for this year’s Annual Meeting is “Stronger Together.” This theme encompasses several topics with the main theme being diversity and inclusiveness. Much has been written about the benefits of having a diverse set of individuals working together on whatever the setting or issue maybe.  Individuals with different backgrounds and experiences can bring a different way of thinking to the table, broadening perspectives resulting in improved decisions. This issue is certainly front and center in the University of California system as all external faculty candidates and internal faculty must provide a diversity statement outlining how they have contributed to diversity and inclusion in their careers and more generally in their lives. Several of our speakers will provide their perspectives on this important topic. I also like to think of “Stronger Together” as encompassing all the different members and sections of the AAA. I think we are stronger as an organization if we do not wall ourselves off in our own sections which can then become siloed. We can learn from each by reading each other’s research. How many of us see tax or audit or international in the title of a paper and say, not my area, so we simply skip over it. I at least try to read the abstract to see if I can gain any insights into accounting and to see if I might learn anything for my research or classroom. I also think “Stronger Together” can be applied to our relationship with non-academics: the FASB, the PCAOB, tax policymakers, the audit firms, and so on. Interactions with these communities can enrich our research (hopefully making it more relevant) and can inform our classrooms and students.

Pre-meeting activities begin on Friday, August 7, with the Transformative Technologies and continue with various sessions and workshops on Saturday and Sunday – including the Conference on Teaching and Learning in Accounting (CTLA) – before the meeting officially gets underway on Monday, August 10.

The plenaries and concurrent sessions will take place from Monday morning, August 10, through the evening on Wednesday, August 12, and will feature a variety of discussions, panels, and events.  The Monday morning plenary will feature Risha Grant, founder and CEO of Risha Grant, LLC which is an award-winning diversity consulting and communications firm. She is an internationally renowned diversity, inclusion, and bias expert who has been featured in Forbes, The Financial Times, and Bloomberg Media among others. She was also named a 2019 Top 100 HR Influencer by Engagedly, a 2018 Inclusive Leadership Award Winner and Entrepreneur of the Year in 2017.

There will be two featured 2020 Presidential Scholars at the Tuesday morning plenary session – Michelle Hanlon and Douglas A. Shackelford. Michelle Hanlon is the Howard W. Johnson Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management where she is the Area Head for Economics, Finance, and Accounting. Her research primarily focuses on taxation and the intersection of taxation and financial accounting. She has testified in front of House and Senate Congressional Committees about U.S. tax policy three times and worked as an Academic Fellow at the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee for part of 2015. She is currently on a tax commission for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  Douglas A. Shackelford is the Meade H. Willis Distinguished Professor of Taxation and has served as Dean of the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School since 2014 and a member of the faculty since 1990. His research and teaching address taxes and business strategy, and he has published widely in accounting, economics, finance, and law journals and testified several times before Congress and other policymaking bodies.

The Tuesday luncheon speaker will be Gregory J. Gordon, who holds dual roles as Managing Director of SSRN and Knowledge Lifecycle Management with Elsevier. He regularly speaks around the world and writes regularly about scholarly research and the changes needed to create innovative research faster. He has written or co-authored several articles including Standards and Infrastructure for Innovation Data Exchange published by Science and The Question of Data Integrity in Article-Level Metrics published by PLOS Biology, and gave a TEDx talk, Trust to the Power of One, in May 2019.

Elaine G. Mauldin, the AAA’s 2020-2021 President-Elect, will be the Wednesday luncheon speaker.  Elaine is the BKD Professor at the Robert J. Trulaske, Sr. College of Business at the University of Missouri, having served on its faculty since 1997. Elaine currently serves as Editor for The Accounting Review (2014-present) and has served as Associate Editor of the Journal of Information Systems (2003-08, 2010-14). She has published widely in peer-reviewed journals including The Accounting ReviewAccounting HorizonsJournal of Information Systems, Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory, and Contemporary Accounting Research to name just a few. She is also the recipient of many awards including Accounting Horizons Best Paper Award (2014), the AIS Section’s Outstanding Research Paper Award (2007), Best Reviewer Award (2001), and Outstanding Dissertation Award (1998).

In addition to the above-listed plenary and luncheon speakers, the concurrent sessions during the Annual Meeting will include some thought-provoking At-Large panel sessions that we hope you will be able to attend.  The meeting will also feature the seventh annual Global Emerging Scholars Research Workshop, which will be held on Sunday, and the Faculty-Student Collaborations in Accounting (FASTCA-20), which will be held on Wednesday.

The AAA will once again be partnering with ShelterBox USA, an international disaster relief charity, for our Service Project. ShelterBox provides emergency shelter and aid to people affected by hurricanes, earthquakes, fires and other disasters throughout the world. Donations to this worthy cause can be made with your AAA registration or in person at the Service Project desk at the Annual Meeting.

The Annual Meeting is a major undertaking, and many members take the planning as a given and underestimate the logistics and planning for a meeting of close to 3,000 members. However, we could not make it happen without the efforts of all the various committee members, member-volunteers, and the AAA Professional Staff in Sarasota.  Whether your focus is on cutting-edge research, innovative teaching methods, and/or gaining a deeper understanding of the numerous issues facing the accounting and business worlds, the 2020 Annual Meeting will provide numerous opportunities to learn, collaborate, catch up with old friends and colleagues, and make new connections. I also invite you to help celebrate, congratulate and wish all the best to our Executive Director, Tracey Sutherland who has led the organization for 23 years and Chief Innovative Officer, Julie Smith David, who has been instrumental in helping the Board, Tracey and many AAA members achieve their objectives over the past decade.

I look forward to seeing you in Atlanta this August as explore the theme “Stronger Together.”