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Abstract: This paper builds on the view that too much attention in the management, management control and management accounting literatures has been given to ex post performance measurement as distinct from ex ante performance management. The paper develops a conceptual model of Performance Management Systems (PMS) building on the work and insights of primarily Otley (1999) and (Ferreira and Otley, 2005) and (Ferreira and Otley, 2009) who share similar concerns. Particular attention is given to analysing the underlying factors that influence the nature of any PMS, which (Ferreira and Otley, 2005) and (Ferreira and Otley, 2009) address only to a limited extent in their model. This analysis into these factors leads to the development of Ferreira and Otley’s conceptualisation into a ‘middle range’ ([Laughlin, 1995], [Laughlin, 2004] and [Broadbent and Laughlin, 1997]) model of the alternative nature of PMS lying on a continuum from ‘transactional’ at one end to ‘relational’ at the other built on respectively underlying instrumental and communicative rationalities and guided by a range of contextual factors.

Broadbent J.and Laughlin R. (2009) ‘Performance Management Systems: A Conceptual model’, Management Accounting Research, Vol 20 (4) : 283-295