Forvaltningsrevision af projekttilskud: Den evige krig

Mie Kristine Bolt

Student thesis: Master thesis


English summary: This Master’s thesis addresses the ongoing debate about performance audit on state funded projects. In February 2013, the Danish Supreme Audit Institution published a study, which concluded that auditors did not specify, and therefore maybe have not performed, an adequate performance audit on funds reports. This master’s thesis examines why the auditors do not perform or specify proper performance audit, and how ongoing discussion between auditors and legislators can move forward. The thesis consists of written sources from auditors, theoreticians and the Danish Supreme Audit Institution. To validate the information obtained through the literature and to include new perspectives and present stands, three interviews were conducted. The interviewees represent the funders, the private auditors and one person who has been working at the Danish Supreme Audit Institution, the City of Copenhagen and as a private auditor. Unfortunately it was not possible to conduct an interview with the Danish Supreme Audit Institution, which has affected the analysis, and therefore there has been more focus on the written sources to discover the stance of the Institution. Through use of Expectation Gab, Framing, Groupthink, the COSO Framework and discourse analysis theories, the lack of performance audit and the ongoing discussion has been examined. The main conclusion of this Master’s thesis is that auditors’ own expectations exceed the expectations of the funders and the Danish Supreme Audit Institution. Because the auditors overstate their assignments, they regard it as unreasonable, and therefor do not perform it. Auditors should pay more attention to the grant letters and other rules for the funded projects, so that they only perform what they are asked to perform. Correspondingly the funders should ensure that all projects have measurable goals, so that the auditor can perform the required performance audit. If there are no measurable goals, it is not reasonable to expect that the auditor will perform a performance audit. If the auditors and funders address these issues, the ongoing discussion can move on to a new phase. For auditors to move focus from themselves, they should start by being more specific as to the purpose of the performance audit, what the performance audit comprises, and when they do not perform it, they should state why they do not do it. In that way the Performance Gap can be reduced, and the Danish Supreme Audit Institution can shift focus, and make the funders take action on the missing measurable goals, instead of criticizing the auditor for deficient reporting.

EducationsMSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages130