Stewart Leech


Stewart Andrew Leech is a highly acclaimed, international scholar who has made a longstanding, significant contribution to the field of Accounting Information Systems (AIS). Undergraduate studies in Commerce at the University of Melbourne followed by postgraduate studies at the University of Tasmania provided the intellectual basis for a 40-year career that extended from the time when computers were first used to support the accounting function to the current day where information technology provides the essential platform for most business operations. In the early 1980s Stewart foresaw that computers would be a disruptive force that over time would fundamentally change how accounting was done and the roles that accountants and users of accounting numbers would play. Stewart has published over 60 papers in research and professional journals and edited books. A number of his journal papers appear in the best AIS, information systems, and accounting journals. He has received two best paper awards at conferences and in 2011, he received the American Accounting Association’s (AAA) AIS Section’s Notable Contribution to the Accounting Information Systems Literature Award. Stewart Leech is the most senior and best known Australian scholar and leader internationally in the AIS field. He is the only non-North American to have been Chair/President of both the AIS and the Artificial Intelligence/Emerging Technologies (AI/ET) Sections of the AAA. Since 2014, he has been joint Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Accounting Information Systems, which is one of the top two journals in the field. In 2003-2004, Stewart was awarded the AAA (AI/ET Section) Outstanding Educator Award followed in 2005-2006 by the AAA (AI/ET Section) Outstanding Researcher Award. In 2011, he received the American Accounting Association’s Strategic and Emerging Technologies Section Outstanding Service Award. Stewart has also provided extensive service to the academic institutions in which he has worked. At the University of Tasmania, he was Professor of Accounting (1992 to 2000) and Head of School (1989 to 1999), and at the University of Melbourne, he was the inaugural Professor of Accounting and Business Information Systems (2000 to 2008) and Head of Department (2006 to 2007). Selfless service to both academic and practitioner professional organisations included membership of State Councils of Tasmania and Victoria for Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) and he was for eleven years chair of CAANZ’s National Education Board. From 1979 to 1997, Stewart also provided significant service to CPA Australia, the business/government communities, and the Institute of Company Directors. In 2009, it is especially noteworthy that Stewart was awarded Life Membership in the American Accounting Association “in recognition of decades of dedicated service”. On leaving the University of Tasmania, Stewart Leech was honoured with the conferral of Professor Emeritus for his service to the University.

The Australian Accounting Hall of Fame honours Stewart Andrew Leech as a visionary scholar, educator and office holder of the highest order. In doing so it acknowledges his extraordinary contribution to the discipline of accounting information systems.