Five years ago at in Corpgov.net we reported:
- On the debate surrounding majority vote requirements. Is it part of real democracy or simply an illusion?
- The SEC voted to allow e-proxy materials.
- Corporate Watchdog Radio interviewed SRI investor and author John Harrington (The Challenge to Power: Money, Investing And Democracy) as well as Robert Monks on the future of shareholder democracy.
- David Webb reported that 100 of 800 new seats on the expanded Election Committee would go to the industrial, commercial and financial sectors which are dominated by corporate voting. We encourage readers to subscribe to David Webb’s informative independent newsletter on corporate and economic governance, business, finance, investment and regulatory affairs in Hong Kong. (Corporate Voting in HK Elections, 11/28/2005)
- The Securities and Exchange Board of India said listed entities could face stiff penalties, including de-listing, if they do not comply with corporate governance norms, such as having at least 50% independent by the year-end. (Sebi may de-list corporate governance defaulters, The Economic Times, 11/25/2005)
- The current issue Directors & Boards (4th Quarter 2005) includes an advice snippet from eleven board members and governance experts. The most responsive was from Charles Elson, Edgar S. Woolard Jr. Chair in corporate Governance and director of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware.
Large investors need to take a more active role in the board nomination process – seeking either director of indirect representation. Directors representing large equity interests tend to be highly motivated and effective management monitors. Rules and norms, both legal and market-based, that restrict such involvement need to be re-examined and reformed to encourage this kind of activity. This is the biggest single change to our governance system that I believe is now necessary to ensure better board functioning.
Elson is leagues ahead of the others who call for boards to “strengthen the focus on strategy,” “be better informed,” “know what and where all the risks are,” “get passionate about the company’s mission,” etc. Compared to Elson’s response, most sound like answers from Miss America contestants.
Ten years ago? I know I reported news but it is lost to the sands of time. I’ll post it up if I ever find it. I even reported news 15 years ago, but misplaced that too. Too many computers ago.