Taking the Ferreira and Otley (2009) broad view of performance management systems (PMSs), the aim of this paper is to investigate the debate over PMSs and strategy tackled in a context of strong traditional academic roots in the accounting field, such as that in Italy. We conduct the research through a systematic review of studies on this topic that have been published in Italian journals since 1980. In determining the object of analysis, we discuss if these papers follow the taken-forgranted international distinction between strategic PMSs as such (ref. to first stream of literature) and PMSs introduced for developing and executing a defined strategy (ref. to second stream of literature). The literature review is based on papers selected from the ESSPER database from 1980 to 2013. The first results show 34 interesting papers published in different Italian journals, especially in the 2000s. These papers are published in a wide range of journals and show a predominantly practical tendency in which both quantitative and qualitative studies are welcome. Studies related to the first stream of literature argue the diffusion of PMSs as techniques and the peculiarities of strategic cost management systems. Further development categorized in the second stream of literature describes in-depth relationships, benefiting from certain topics understudied nowadays in the national debate. Evidence of the influence of economia aziendale on some papers belonging to both the two streams emerges.
Keywords: Performance Management System, Strategy, Italian Journal, Literature. Review