Title: Enron and the 12 steps of white-collar crime

Authors: Randy Appel; Jae Fratzl; Ruth B. McKay; Carey Stevens

Addresses: Department of Education, Concordia University, 1455 de Maisonneuve Blvd. W., LB-579, Montreal, Quebec, H3G 1M8, Canada ' Artworks Counselling and Psychotherapy, Box 133 Oro, Ontario L0L 2X0, Canada ' Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, 914 Dunton Tower, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Ottawa, Ontario, K1S 5B6, Canada ' Carey Stevens and Associates, 59 Paula Crescent, Ottawa, Ontario K2H 8Y8, Canada

Abstract: In 2001, Enron Corporation (Enron) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection due to accounting irregularities. At the core of the failure was a corporate culture that held in contempt regulatory oversight, financial disclosure and the governance process. This paper applies a 12-step model of white-collar crime (McKay et al., 2010) to the case of Enron. The analysis is based on an interview with Sherron Watkins, whistleblower and former employee of Enron, as well as other coverage of the Enron collapse. This paper presents the value of the model as applied to a single organisation and makes recommendations based on the application.

Keywords: Enron; white-collar crime; ethics; accounting irregularities; corporate culture; regulatory oversight; financial disclosure; corporate governance.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBGE.2014.066277

International Journal of Business Governance and Ethics, 2014 Vol.9 No.4, pp.381 - 405

Received: 29 Nov 2013
Accepted: 18 Aug 2014

Published online: 10 Dec 2014 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article