This paper investigates the conditions of possibility for innovation in regulatory space. The first-time inclusion of narrative reporting on the agenda of the British Accounting Standards Board (ASB) is studied in terms of a complex web of discursive schemes, which co-constituted the regulatory issue and the context in which it emerged. By exploring the discursive level of accounting reform, the approach shows how the emergence of narrative reporting on the agenda of the ASB was mediated in a historically specific constellation of formal institutional structures, professional trajectories, and changing conceptions of the roles and purposes of accounting in business management and macro-economic governance. The formation of this constellation is conceptualized as a multi-directional process of translation. This perspective, which is inspired by sociological studies of accounting, may offer new directions for research on regulatory translations in other domains and may inspire research on law as a social and institutional practice more generally.