The UK’s Corporate Governance Code has remained largely unchanged since its introduction in 1992. Chris Hodge examines how we can realign its purpose to match today’s expectations of what it ought to achieve.
In 1992, when the Cadbury Committee introduced the first corporate governance code for listed companies, and the “comply or explain” mechanism by which companies report to their shareholders, it stated that the purpose was to address “the control and reporting functions of boards”—an important but modest ambition.
Twenty-five years on, the system the Committee introduced has been built on considerably, but has not fundamentally changed. By contrast, our expectations of what it ought to be able to achieve have changed enormously.
The government’s Green Paper on corporate governance reform, for example, identifies as its objec
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