Literature investigating accounting systems innovation which emerged following public sector reforms has shown that changes adopt connotations that depend closely by the reference context, where public administrations often take on, under various pressures, homogeneous structures and procedures to comply with the demands of their environment (isomorphisms). This paper has taken into consideration the effects of changes in management control system of Italian universities introduced by Law 240/2010 and the results of a survey promoted by the Standing Conference of Managing Directors and Executives of Italian Universities (CODAU) are analysed. The findings highlight organizational aspects of the management control system, as well as features of the information and reporting systems. Using a quantitative methodology, the study demonstrates the heterogeneity of the administrative behaviour of universities and the absence of evidence of isomorphic behaviour in the implementation process.
Keywords: Universities, Management control, Accounting reforms, Institutional theory, Isomorphism.