Karim Jamal

Professor, Alberta School of Business - Department of Accounting and Business Analytics
Chair/ABA, Alberta School of Business - Department of Accounting and Business Analytics


Professor, Alberta School of Business - Department of Accounting and Business Analytics
(780) 492-5829
3-20K Business Building
11203 Saskatchewan Drive NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2R6

Chair/ABA, Alberta School of Business - Department of Accounting and Business Analytics



Karim Jamal is a Professor in the Department of Accounting and Business Analytics at the University of Alberta and as of July 1, 2009 became Chair of the Department. In 2009, the Alberta Institute of Chartered Accountants (ICAA) made Dr Jamal a Fellow of Chartered Accountants (FCA), and in 2010, Dr Jamal received the Canadian Academic Accounting Association’s (CAAA) Haim Falk Award for Distinguished Contribution to Accounting Thought.


Research Interests

Karim's current research interest is in developing cognitive models of expert decision making in accounting, auditing and financial markets. His current research focuses on:

  1. The impact of discretion in accounting rules on earnings management and production / investment decisions of managers. This work seeks to tie amount of discretion in accounting rules, governance structures such as composition of the Board of Directors, operating decisions of managers, and stock market structure (e.g., varying sophistication of investors) into a systemic assessment of the impact of accounting rules on society.
  2. Understanding the development of common knowledge and how well individuals can assess the technical knowledge and / or predict the preferences of other people. Ability to assess knowledge / preferences of others is important for coordinating behaviour, selecting staff to work on client engagements of varying complexity, determining the intensity of review processes, and determining whom to consult when one needs advice.
  3. Automated computer experiments focusing on two key issues: (a) Testing the privacy practices of e-commerce websites. E-commerce is a largely unregulated field, so it provides insight about how a market creates disclosure rules and a demand for audit services in the absence of any government or regulatory body. (b) Assessing the functionality of simple heuristic strategies in market environments. Economic models make strong assumptions about the computational ability of human agents. Here we explore how simple individual level strategies (e.g., anchor and adjust) might lead to complex aggregate level behaviour (such as Bayesian behaviour).

Research Papers

Karim has publications in Accounting Review, Accounting, Organizations and Society, Behavioral Research in Accounting, Cognitive Science, Contemporary Accounting Research, Journal of Accounting Research, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.


Teaching Experience

  • Introductory Financial Accounting at the University of Minnesota. 
  • Introduction to Management Control (ACCTG 322); 
  • Accounting Theory (ACCTG 416); 
  • Intermediate Managerial Accounting (ACCTG 424), 
  • Introductory Auditing (ACCTG 456); 
  • MBA Management Accounting (ACCTG 522) 

I have also taught a research survey course for PH.D students (ACCTG 701), as well as more specialized Ph.d research seminars on JDM research (ACCTG 702 and ACCTG 711) and a research paper critique course (ACCTG 703).


ACCTG 703B - Accounting Research Workshop

Based on the Department's research workshop program, this course will discuss research methodology as it applies to accounting and ensure students learn how to review/evaluate current research and literature. Students are expected to present their own research and to analyze the research of others. This workshop is a single term course offered over two terms. Students are expected to attend regularly throughout their doctoral program, but register for credit in their second year (prior to taking accounting comprehensive examination).

ACCTG 706 - Introduction to Behavioral and Experimental Accounting Research

A generalist course on research that is primarily oriented to individual behavior in accounting settings. Topics covered will include individual cognitive processes and limitations, the experimental method, and a broad survey of experimental and field studies (drawing on psychology and economics) conducted in accounting settings. Open to all doctoral students or with the written permission of the instructor. Approval of the Associate Dean, PhD Program is also required for non-PhD students.

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