Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Paul Rutledge


Even when clean audit reports are issued for not-for-profit organizations (NFPOs), misuse of donor resources may continue for years without detection by financial statement users. Previous research has established creative accounting, haphazard reporting, and fraud among NFPOs. As a result, aid has been reduced and some projects have been suspended. With Uganda as the study area, the key research question was the following: What is the impact of financial reporting frameworks on the quality of financial reports in Uganda, controlling for class of external auditors? The purpose of this quantitative, causal-comparative study was to establish whether reporting frameworks used by NFPOs in Uganda affect the quality of financial reports. Survey data through a researcher-developed instrument were collected from a purposefully selected sample of 74 NFPOs. Data included financial reporting frameworks as the independent variable, quality of financial reports as the dependent variable, and class of external auditors as a covariate. The data were analyzed using analysis of covariance. Dhanani and Connolly's accountability theory was adopted as the central theory. Findings indicated that there were no significant associations between financial reporting frameworks and quality of financial reports. The highest quality score was 25.2% with a mean of 15.6%, indicating poor NFPO quality reporting in Uganda. These findings support creation of a financial reporting framework for NFPOs. Such a framework could boost donor funding, uniform reporting, and standardized guidelines for external auditors, as well as increased transparency and government confidence in NFPOs.