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Is your board’s relationship with management built to withstand a crisis?

Nov 12, 2019

On November 12, 2019, the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) released a blog on how corporate crises that have a serious impact on an organization’s share price, reputation, and leadership are increasingly frequent events. Yet few companies are truly prepared to cope with such crises, and, in particular, with the challenge of deteriorating personal dynamics between a company’s executive management and its overseers—and within the boardroom itself.

This cultural dimension is often a fundamental weakness which, in the most severe crises, can threaten a company’s very survival.

This is the premise of a new joint report from McKinsey & Co. and NACD, titled “Building Board-Management Dynamics to Withstand a Crisis: Addressing the Fault Lines.”

Review the full blog on the NACD's website.

Accounting for value creation and encouraging the rise of the chief value officer

Nov 07, 2019

On November 7, 2019, the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) released an article on how accounting for value creation needs rethinking.

Value is created through knowledge and creativity. Digital disruption is threatening entire industries. Financial markets are fraught with geopolitical and economic volatility. The deepening climate emergency, and other environmental issues such as water and land use, mean that business as usual is not an option.

In this world, achieving a resilient and sustainable business model has never been more challenging. Viewing value creation only through the lens of shareholders means undermining trust in the organization, compromising its reputation, and even threatening its license to operate. A broader set of data, information and insights is needed to provide a bigger picture of how value is created.

Review the full article on IFAC's website.

Cybersecurity is critical for all organizations – large and small

Nov 04, 2019

On November 4, 2019, the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) released an article on how cybercrime is becoming big business and cyber risk a focus of organizations and governments globally. Monetary and reputational risks are high if organizations don’t have an appropriate cybersecurity plan.

The article discusses:

  • What is cybersecurity?
  • Cybersecurity governance
  • Protection from malicious software and external attack
  • Hardware maintenance plans
  • People and documentation
  • Policies and procedures
  • System use policy
  • Email use policy
  • Internet use policy
  • Remote access policy
  • Insurance

Review the full article on the IFAC's website.

Speech on ethics, professionalism and the public interest

Nov 04, 2019

On November 4, 2019, the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) released a speech by Dr. Stavros Thomadakis, IESBA Chair given at the National Accounting Institute in Beijing, China.

In his speech, he discusses:

  • IESBA: An independent and authoritative standard setter
  • Restructuring and revision: The new code of 2018
  • The ecode: A valuable tool for users
  • Working for the future
  • Recognizing the synergy of ethics and ISAs
  • Technological revolution
  • From global ethical practice to ethical leadership

Review the full speech on the IESBA's website.

Torys Quarterly: Canadian sector report

Oct 31, 2019

On October 31, 2019, Torys LLP released its report where they turn their focus to sectors in Canada: what kind of deal activity are they experiencing, what marketplace and regulatory challenges are they facing—and what does it mean for Canadian business as we move toward 2020?

Some of Canada’s emerging and fast-growing sectors have been busy managing new realities as they continue to develop. Canada’s technology sector is maturing, with acqui-hires and other investment coming into the country’s tech hubs. Canada’s tech sector has become a particularly attractive sector for U.S. buyers—including large buyers—which is influencing the Canadian tech ecosystem in important ways, from how deals are getting done to domestic VC funding.

Review the press release and report on the Torys website.

Disrupting diversity and inclusion: The promise of behavioural design

Oct 30, 2019

On October 30, 2019, the Conference Board of Canada released an article on how we need to recognize workplace diversity and inclusion for what it is: a wicked problem. It is difficult to solve, deeply interconnected with other complex social issues, and wrought with systemic and individual biases.

The glacial progress indicates that our current approaches are not working. In Canada, less than one-fifth of all leadership roles are held by women. And women’s representation on company boards is also still low, changing at 1–2 per cent every year—not fast enough to reach long-term targets. Other under-represented groups’ experiences can be even worse, from consistently lower wages for immigrant workers to a dismal employment rate for people with disabilities.

Review the full article on the Conference Board of Canada's website.

It’s time to reassess ESG and sustainability reporting

Oct 28, 2019

On October 28, 2019, the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) posted a blog that discusses how nearly all S&P 500 companies provide some form of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) or sustainability reports today, but there are growing concerns by a range of stakeholders—investors, employees, customers, regulators, and activists—regarding the quality, comparability, and usefulness of these reports.

For a variety of reasons and based on analysis of several approaches to disclosure, expect increasing stakeholder demands are expected for more transparent and higher quality ESG reporting.

Read the full blog on the NACD's website.

Trends in cybersecurity breaches continue in 2019

Oct 24, 2019

On October 24, 2019, Audit Analytics released an article on how the number of organizations experiencing cyber-attacks has grown rapidly; over 120 cybersecurity incidents were disclosed in 2018 and 93 have been disclosed so far in 2019.

The proliferation of cyber breaches can be attributed to several factors, primarily that more companies are using more computer systems for more tasks.

Review the full article on Audit Analytics' website.

ESG risks trickle into financial filings

Oct 21, 2019

On October 21, 2019, the NACD BoardTalk released a blog on how investors in 2019 have increasingly turned their attention to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) topics, and are demanding more information on how companies are thinking about the potential long-term risk and opportunities related to specific environmental and social factors.

As companies prepare for the 2020 proxy season and engage with shareholders, directors should understand the current state of ESG risk reporting in public filings.

Review the full blog on the NACD BoardTalk's website.

Investigating the impact of global stablecoins

Oct 18, 2019

On October 18, 2019, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) released a report by the G7 Working Group on Stablecoins on how recently a number of stablecoin initiatives have emerged, some sponsored by large technology or financial firms.

Stablecoins, which have many of the features of earlier cryptocurrencies but seek to stabilize the price of the "coin" by linking its value to that of a pool of assets, have the potential to contribute to the development of more efficient global payment arrangements.

The report lays out initial recommendations for both private sector stablecoin developers and public sector authorities to address the challenges and risks. Finally, the report suggests that authorities could develop road maps for improving the efficiency and lowering the cost of payments and financial services.

Review the press release and report on the BIS' website.

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