Zahn Bozanic, assistant professor of accounting at Fisher, was named as a recipient of the 2017 Deloitte Foundation Wildman Medal Award at the American Accounting Association’s (AAA) annual conference.

Bozanic and his colleagues, Dan Amiram, of Columbia Business School, and Ethan Rouen, of Harvard Business School, were recognized for their paper published in the Review of Accounting Studies entitled “Financial Statement Errors: Evidence from the Distributional Properties of Financial Statement Numbers.”

Relying on Benford’s Law, the researchers develop a composite, firm-year measure to determine whether the overall distribution (rather than a single digit or account) of a firm’s financial statement numbers conform to Benford’s Law, which they term the Financial Statement Divergence (FSD) Score. Among other findings, the paper shows that the restated financial statement numbers firms report more closely conform to Benford’s Law than the originally misstated numbers.

The paper, during both its working paper stage and continuing on after publication, has received a tremendous amount of attention beyond academia. It has been featured in numerous press articles, including Forbes,, and The Wall Street Journal. Investors have taken note, as the FSD Score has been the topic of several institutional investor research reports. The implications of the paper have also drawn the attention of regulators, such as the PCAOB and SEC.

The Deloitte Foundation Wildman Medal Award was founded in 1978 to commemorate John Wildman and to encourage research relevant to the professional practice of accounting to which much of Wildman’s life was devoted.