Watch back: TASC Discussion: Shareholders or Stakeholders?
This event happened on 23rd March 2017
What is the purpose of a company? It is often taken as self-evident that companies exist primarily to create maximum value for their shareholders. Indeed, the shareholder value model of the firm is now so much part of the mainstream that it has been incorporated into company law and accounting practices worldwide.
Yet the recent financial and economic crisis has undermined faith in the orthodoxy that the stock market is the best yardstick to measure company value. Is it time to think afresh about governance of the company and its proper role in society and the economy?
Does a stakeholder value approach offer a sustainable alternative, with its emphasis on companies’ responsibilities for different groups both inside and outside the firm?
Should employees themselves, as key stakeholders in any firm, be automatically entitled to a voice in governance through direct participation at board room level? Is this a pipe dream? Or can we envisage an enlightened approach to corporate governance that balances conventional shareholder profit goals with broader stakeholder engagement in decision-making?
This discussion brought together an expert panel of corporate governance experts, academics and practitioners to discuss fresh ideas of what makes a sustainable company for our times. Speakers were:
- Prof Blanaid Clarke - McCann FitzGerald Chair in Corporate Law, Trinity College Dublin and Irish representative on the OECD Corporate Governance Committee.
- Mr Kevin Toland - Chief Executive of daa, the commercial semi-state company that operates Dublin and Cork airports, the multinational travel retail business ARI, and the airport management and aviation advisory services provider daa International.
- Dr Jan Cremers - expert in workers' participation and corporate governance, Amsterdam Institute of Advanced Labour Studies.
The discussion was chaired by journalist Ms Dearbhail McDonald , Group Business Editor Independent News and Media. You can watch a video recording of the discussion above.
Date and venue
Thursday 23 rd March 2017 | 18.00 - 20.30 | ESB HQ, 27 Fitzwilliam Street Lower, Dublin 2. Light refreshments from 18.00 to 18.30.
This event was the first in a series sponsored by the National Worker Directors’ Group as part of a research project by TASC exploring the possibilities of employee involvement in the modern company. The next evening public discussion in the series will be held on 11th May 2017.
ESB HQ, Dublin