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This paper applies the theoretical framework proposed by McKinnon [1986] to the creation of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) which represented an important change to the accounting system in India post-independence. The development of the ICAI is categorized into three phases: source, diffusion, and reaction. Intra-system activity, trans-system activity, and the socio-economic and political environments are shown to influence all stages of the change. Within these phases, the paper focuses on the involvement of the state in the development of the ICAI, credentialism and the importance of the title chartered, the disciplinary powers of the ICAI, and the issue of mutual recognition and reciprocity with foreign professional accounting organizations.



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