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SESSION PREVIEW

The Courageous Director - Can Corporations Better Serve People, Planet, and Profit?

Third session of the Salzburg Global Forum on Corporate Governance to explore role of corporation as a good citizen

The three-day program will see participants address issues relating to how corporations can act as good citizens

Tomas De La Rosa | 04.10.2017

Arguably one of the mechanisms that keeps the world running, the private sector has spear-headed global economic development since its induction, exhibiting a non-stop growth that, in the past, led many corporations to assume a posture focused on their freedom of action. This freedom, however, has often resulted in social principles being neglected in order to maximize profit.

Nowadays, due to the rise of corporate justice movements, and the ever-growing development of politicians’ and everyday citizens’ socio-political consciences, corporations must carefully assess their impact on society and be perceived as positive influencers – avoiding boycotts, disasters or scandals.

Good corporate governance can drive this assessment, offering a control system that ensures ethical leadership through accurate reporting, sustainable finances, delivering long-term strategic goals, good relationship with consumers, regulators, and stakeholders, and a safe and functional work environment.

For corporations, this represents an opportunity to be socially responsible, reconnect with communities and popular opinion, and be seen by clients as organizations that listen to their concerns. For directors, this represents the potential to demonstrate how their prominent influences and responsibilities enable them to be more courageous.

From Thursday, 40 corporate leaders and executives will convene at Schloss Leopoldskron, in Salzburg, Austria, for Session 582 – The  Courageous Director: Can Corporations Better Serve People, Planet, and Profit?

The three-day program will see participants address issues relating to how corporations can act as good citizens, the impact of corporate behavior, the influence of shareholders on corporate governance, and how boards can be effective and steer corporations in its optimal direction.

Participants, drawing on their internationally diverse business, legal and academic backgrounds, will explore case studies such as Volkswagen’s emissions scandal, Wells Fargo’s fake accounts, and the Google anti-diversity memo.

This session is part of multi-year series, the Salzburg Global Forum on Corporate Governance. First held in 2015, the Forum facilitates critical thinking on changing regulatory and economic environments, comparative practices, and the roles and duties of directors.

Salzburg Global Program Director Charles Ehrlich, said, “We will explore how directors of multinational corporations can better serve as global influencers through ethical leadership.  Corporate scandals are bad for business – understanding risks and opportunities, and being able to communicate objectives effectively to staff and to the public, can enable corporations to maximize their bottom line while also doing the right thing for the global community.”


The Salzburg Global program The Courageous Director: Can Corporations Better Serve People, Planet, and Profit? is part of the multi-year series, the Salzburg Global Forum on Corporate Governance. The session is being supported by Shearman & Sterling LLP, BNY Mellon, UBS, Barclays, CLP Group, Goldman Sachs, and Teledyne Technologies. More information on the session can be found here.

04.10.2017 Tomas De La Rosa