chapter  6
42 Pages

The Genesis of Professional Organization in Scotland: A Contextual Analysis

WithStephen Ρ Walker

This chapter seeks to accommodate the demands of the "post-revisionist" sociologists of the professions for historical investigations of a rigorous, contextual character. The latter is largely absent from prevailing analyses of the emergence of organizations of accountants in Scotland. J. C. Stewarts explanations for the early professionalization of accountants in Scotland also integrated the economic determinist and differential legal system approaches. The vast expansion of industrial and financial activity required the services of skilled accountants by the mid-nineteenth century. The defects in the system of administering insolvent estates in Scotland were discussed frequently during the early 1850s. The fruits of the London Committee's labours were produced in a 'Report and Suggestions Addressed to the Mercantile Community of the United Kingdom' in October 1852 which listed a miscellany of evils under the current Scottish law of insolvency. Delays in the appointment of Interim Factors and in the realization and distribution of the bankrupt's estate were highlighted.