The Influence of Fairness Perceptions and Goal Commitment on Managers' Performance in a Budget Setting

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Recent budgeting research suggests that fairness perceptions play a role in performance. In particular, prior work demonstrates a positive relation between fairness and performance during budgeting. The process by which fairness perceptions translate into improved performance, however, remains unaddressed. This study contributes to the accounting literature by investigating whether fairness perceptions improve performance via participation by increasing managers' commitment to budgetary goals. Structural equation models are proposed in which both fairness perceptions and goal commitment influence managers' performance during budgeting. Questionnaire data collected from one field site in the midst of downsizing were used to test the models. The results suggest that increased participation during budgeting fosters a sense of fairness, which, in turn, increases managers' commitment to budgetary goals and subsequently enhances performance ratings. The direct path between fairness perceptions and performance, however, appears to be insignificant when goal commitment is considered.






This article is the authors' final published version in Behavioral Research in Accounting, Volume 14, Issue 1, January 2002, Pages 247-271.

The published version is available at https://doi.org/10.2308/bria.2002.14.1.247. Copyright © American Accounting Association