Surveys the field research literature in management accounting and control (MAC) published in the period 1984-1992. Proposes a definition of field research and compares the 82 published works that meet this definition with respect to their motivations, research designs and presentation formats. The comparison reveals the tremendous diversity among the field research publications. Evaluates the methods and contributions of this research - field researchers usually choose interesting, relevant topics but many of the works have weaknesses in research design, data presentation and interpretation of findings. Concludes with some observations on the costs, risks, and potential payoffs of field research.