Public company communication, engagement and accountability: where are we and where should we be heading?

North, Gill 2013, Public company communication, engagement and accountability: where are we and where should we be heading?, Company and securities law journal, vol. 31, pp. 167-188.

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Title Public company communication, engagement and accountability: where are we and where should we be heading?
Author(s) North, GillORCID iD for North, Gill
Journal name Company and securities law journal
Volume number 31
Start page 167
End page 188
Total pages 21
Publisher Lawbook Co.
Place of publication Rozelle, N.S.W.
Publication date 2013
ISSN 0729-2775
Summary The annual general meeting was introduced as an essential element of the public company governance model. However, the usefulness of these meetings is being increasingly questioned both in Australia and elsewhere. The article initially examines the role of annual general meetings in Australia. Proposals to enhance the value of these meetings are reviewed. The efficacy of annual general meetings is then discussed within the broader context of public company communication, engagement and accountability. Most listed company exchanges involving governance and operational matters occur during private meetings with institutional attendees. The public discourse tends to be limited and sanitised. The article argues that the rationales and assumptions underlying this hierarchical communication structure are deeply flawed. Annual general meetings provide a limited forum once a year for shareholders to meet and directly question company directors. Broader and more robust governance and accountability mechanisms will only emerge when listed companies are required to utilise available digital technologies to communicate and regularly engage with all of their stakeholders (and critics) in the public arena. Public corporations are privileged legal constructs, and as such, they should be compelled to communicate with, and to remain accountable to, the public at large.
Language eng
Field of Research 180109 Corporations and Associations Law
1801 Law
1501 Accounting, Auditing And Accountability
Socio Economic Objective 949999 Law
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2013, Lawbook Co.
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