Exploring the Impact of Covid19 and the Role Governance, Accounting and Finance Can Play in Preventing Future Pandemics

Call for papers for: Qualitative Research in Financial Markets

Guest editors

Jill Atkins, University of Sheffield, UK 
Abeer Hassan, University of the West of Scotland, UK 
Warren Maroun, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

What is the special issue about?

The devastating impact of the Coronavirus Pandemic which began in Wuhan, China in December 2019, and is sweeping through countries across the globe, is only now beginning to be appreciated. The immense financial and economic impacts are already being felt throughout the business sector but also by governments, the public sector and in voluntary and charity sectors worldwide. Corporate governance and accountability frameworks have the capacity to integrate risk management, internal control and accountability mechanisms for anticipating and responding to a pandemic of this nature through disaster management, business continuity planning and health and safety. Business continuity plans assist companies in establishing clear plans and procedures for dealing with major external events, such as Covid19, in order to be able to continue business as far as possible. The Coronavirus pandemic is an extreme but also apt illustration of how businesses that have established systems whereby staff can work at home remotely, for example, in such a crisis, are more likely to weather the storm induced by social distancing measures and new legislation than those that were unprepared (Solomon, 2021). Further, risk disclosures around disaster/crisis management and business continuity plans represent an important element of internal control frameworks for businesses. Accounting and finance have also started to address the implications of biodiversity decline, species and habitat loss, through accounting frameworks and responsible investment (Hassan et al., 2020b). Given the evidence of transmission of coronavirus from animals to humans (Hassan et al., 2020a), accounting for biodiversity and investor engagement that highlight protection against risks of such transmission within business environments and by employees is urgent and necessary in order to prevent further incidences like the current crisis.

We welcome submissions of full papers that address the following research questions:

  • How have organisations prepared themselves for a pandemic, through their risk management and internal control systems, in the wake of COVID-19?;
  • To what extent have risk management systems within organizations been adequate to ensure business continuity and stakeholder protection throughout the pandemic?
  • How have companies and other organisations reported on their risk management before the pandemic, and in what ways are they reporting on the impacts on their business and on their stakeholders during and following the pandemic?
  • What are the direct and indirect implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on business systems, processes and continuity?
  • How have capital markets, financial systems and financial institutions responded to COVID-19?How can the mechanisms of governance, accounting and accountability contribute to managing the effects of the pandemic? 
  • Does accounting have a role to play in protecting organisations and stakeholders from contracting diseases that pass from animals to humans?
  • How should companies report on pandemics in their environmental, integrated and sustainability reports? 
  • How can governance, accounting and finance be redesigned in order to prevent another pandemic
  • What weaknesses in governance, accountability and transparency have been uncovered due to COVID-19 and how may these be addressed?

We also welcome research applying a wide range of methodological approaches including qualitative, quantitative, interpretive, and critical/theoretical. We would stress that, given the exploratory nature of research in this area, the above list is merely indicative rather than exhaustive, and that submissions on other topics relating to Covid19 and its implications for accounting, finance and corporate governance are welcome. 

Submissions and deadlines

  • Submissions for this special issue must be made though the ScholarOne submission site for QRFM
  • A dedicated space for this Special Issue will open on 1st August 2021, with publication anticipated in the 2022 volume 
  • If you would like to discuss the special issue and your potential contribution, please contact the guest editors by email: Jill Atkins ([email protected]), Abeer Hassan ([email protected]) and Warren Maroun ([email protected]). All papers will be reviewed in accordance with the normal procedures for Qualitative Research in Financial Markets. 


Solomon, J. F. (2021) Corporate Governance and Accountability, 5th edition, John Wiley & Sons Inc.
Hassan, A., Nando, M., Roberts, L. (2020a). Does loss of biodiversity by businesses cause Covid 19”.https://www.eauc.org.uk/does_loss_of_biodiversity_by_businesses_cause_c. https://www.eauc.org.uk/6998
Hassan, A., Nando, M., Roberts, L., Elamer, A. and Lodh, S. (2020b).  “The future of Business Reporting: Learning from financial and Covid-19 crises”. Under Review. 
Roberts, L. Hassan, A., Nandy, M. and Elamer, A. (2020). “Nursing both the Covid 19 and Biodiversity Crisis Together. https://www.eauc.org.uk/nursing_both_the_covid_19_and_biodiversity_crisis https://www.eauc.org.uk/7008