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External auditing and corporate governance perspectives in a small state: the case of Malta

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posted on 16.04.2018, 15:09 authored by Peter J. Baldacchino
This thesis stems from academic research following my MPhil in 1992. It presents a portfolio of fourteen selected papers offering insights on major issues affecting the accountancy-related areas of external auditing (EA) and corporate governance (CG) in the small state of Malta. The commentary (Chapter 1) presents a background to the development of the portfolio and overviews the theoretical framework and methodology. It then introduces each paper, underlining common sub-themes. The contributions of the papers to knowledge are then indicated by (i) overviewing the development of each sub-theme contributing to the academic discourses in EA and CG, and (ii) laying out the relevance to the wider debates relating to small state literature. The commentary concludes by looking at the follow-up research agenda and the beckoning future. Chapters 2 to 15 then reproduce fourteen papers an introductory paper and thirteen others in two parts. The introductory paper includes most major small state sub-themes recurring in different ways in the subsequent papers: issues relating to close relationships and independence, discipline, resistance to change, regulation, secrecy, small business units and other small state issues. The following first part includes seven papers on Maltese external auditing in owner-managed companies, auditor changes, auditor perceptions, qualified opinions, first-time auditor selection, fee development and dysfunctional audit behaviour. The second part then comprises six papers on Maltese CG including the CG statement, internal audit benchmarking, conflicts of interest in co-operatives, the board/management relationship, a CG index, and small shareholder participation in the AGM. The portfolio contributes to literature notably by its original highlighting of the significance of the above-mentioned sub-themes on various aspects of EA and CG in a small state. Furthermore, the portfolio impacts Maltese EA and CG practices, particularly by emphasising the need to go beyond the adoption of imported regulatory frameworks



  • Business and Economics


  • Business


© Peter J. Baldacchino

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.