Adoption, diffusion and appropriation of double entry book-keeping in Mexico and Spain


Bernardo Batiz Lazo
J. Julián Hernández Borreguero
J. Carles Maixé Altés
Miriam Nuñez Torrado


There are conflicting and even contradictory claims as to when exactly double entry bookkeeping arrived to New Spain as well as its diffusion during the colonial era. Although we fail to present evidence from Mexican private enterprise, we address the apparent contradictions while putting forward the idea that the history of “modern” accounting practice in Latin America should be framed by developments in its former colonial power. Our conclusion is that the history of Latin American accounting should be wary of extrapolating everyday practice by interpreting bibliographic material and proceed to pay greater attention to the appropriation of accounting technology through the examination of surviving company documents as well as informal educational practices amongst organizations based in Spain and its colonies.
Palabras clave:
Digraphic method, accounting systems, knowledge transfer, viceroyalty.


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