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Management Control D2

Course code
Course type
BSc Course
Weekly Hours
HS 2023
Prof. Dr. Marko Reimer
Please note that exchange students obtain a higher number of credits in the BSc-program at WHU than listed here. For further information please contact directly the International Relations Office.

This course creates a basic understanding of management accounting and control and tasks of controllers within the ranges information supply, planning and control. The students learn what management control is and what controllers do. On this basis, important management accounting and control instruments, like performance indicators, transfer pricing, budgeting, and frameworks of strategic planning will be introduced. Furthermore, the students should learn to understand the uses and limitations of these instruments.

Chapter 1: Principles of Management Control

  • Control problems in business organizations
  • Management control devices, practices, and systems
  • Interaction of human behavior and management control
  • Conceptualization of management control as assurance of rationality

Chapters 2 and 3: Performance Measurement

  • Opportunities and pitfalls regarding management using financial performance indicators
  • Opportunities and pitfalls regarding management using non-financial performance indicators (including ESG-related KPIs)

Chapter 4: Operational Planning

  • Perspectives on planning as a key concept of management control
  • “Traditional” budgeting: Concept, benefits, and challenges
  • Forecasting and alternative approaches to budgeting
  • Transfer pricing: Concept, benefits, and challenges

Chapter 5: Strategic Planning

  • The gap between the strategic vision and its implementation
  • Management devices to bridge the gap: Balanced Scorecards (BSC) and Objectives & Key Results (OKR)

Chapter 6: Controllers in Organizations

  • Limits to rational decision-making revisited
  • Roles and tasks of controllers in their interplay with managers: Opportunities and challenges
  • Empirical insights into controllership

The lecture series will include two guest talks by top controllers from DAX companies on current topics in ESG controlling and corporate planning.

Date Time
Tuesday, 31.10.2023 11:30 - 15:15
Wednesday, 08.11.2023 11:30 - 15:15
Thursday, 16.11.2023 11:30 - 15:15
Tuesday, 21.11.2023 11:30 - 13:00
Wednesday, 22.11.2023 11:30 - 13:00
Wednesday, 29.11.2023 11:30 - 13:00
Thursday, 30.11.2023 09:45 - 11:15
Wednesday, 06.12.2023 11:30 - 15:15
Application of conceptual foundations of controlling; students will be enabled to recognize opportunities and challenges in aligning managers‘ and employees‘ behavior with organizational goals and strategies.
Readings will be provided via Moodle. Basic textbooks on course topics:Hartmann, F.; Kraus, K.; Nilsson, G.; Anthony, R.; Govindarajan, V. (2020): Management Control Systems, McGraw-Hill: London.Merchant, K.A.; van der Stede, W.A. (2017). Management Control Systems: Performance Measurement, Evaluation and Incentives, Pearson: Harlow.Bhimani, A.; Horngren, Ch.T.; Datar, S. M.; Rajan, M. (2023): Management and Cost Accounting, 8th edition, Pearson: Harlow.
(interactive) lecture, (case) readings and discussions, independent studies
Final written exam (100%)
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