Insights - Australia

Governance Institute of Australia and the Australian Institute of Company Directors have released the attached Joint Statement on board minutes, prompted by the heightened level of scrutiny that the practice of minute-taking has attracted since the Hayne Royal Commission. The Statement outlines the two organisation’s perspective on current issues in minute taking to support their members in this area and help guide debate on this topic. In this statement, we summarise key principles, provide our view on matters to be included in minutes, and consider the approach to board papers and document retention policies.


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In recent years there has been increase in Australia and overseas in the number of shareholders seeking to put resolutions to Annual General Meetings on a range of issues — many of which relate to environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters. Governance Institute partnered with global knowledge provider LexiNexis to host a roundtable of key industry stakeholders to determine if in fact there is a case for change.


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In recent years there has been increase in Australia and overseas in the number of shareholders seeking to put resolutions to Annual General Meetings on a range of issues — many of which relate to environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters. Governance Institute partnered with global knowledge provider LexiNexis to host a roundtable of key industry stakeholders to determine if in fact there is a case for change. This was in response to the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors paper Shareholder resolutions in Australia, Is there a better way? The roundtable discussion confirmed that there is currently no consensus as to whether reform of the current framework for shareholder resolutions is required, or if required, what form should this should take.


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As part of a global ICSA thought leadership project, Governance Institute surveyed its members on minute taking. The Australian survey consisted of text outlining Governance Institute’s existing position on various minutes-related issues derived from our suite of Good Governance Guides and best practice documents, followed by questions asking respondents to confirm or otherwise comment on those positions.


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In December 2017 Governance Institute of Australia, The Ethics Centre, the Institute of Internal Auditors, Australia and Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand released this joint publication. The publication brings together years of research by some of Australia’s most knowledgeable people and organisations working in the field of ethics and risk culture.


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