The recent agreement between all 193 UN member states on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (also referred to as the “Global Goals”) demonstrates a widespread political commitment to dealing with some of the world’s most
A lack of confidence in non-financial information is hindering its utility for users assessing an organization’s performance and potential for long term value creation—using their knowledge of management and process control, professional accountants can do much to improve confidence in the non-financials.
Investor engagement, regulation, and societal expectations are driving increasing awareness and action on environmental, social, and governance performance. This forces organizations and CFOs to enhance reporting and disclosure, and include ESG factors in daily decision making. But how should organizations provide meaningful and specific disclosures for ESG issues? What significant initiatives and frameworks are available to help? How can organizations ensure reporting and disclosure is useful for users?
The role of professional accountants in assisting their organizations in making the most of predictive business analytics to improve strategy and performance management enterprise wide is more important than ever. Organizations are drowning in data but starving for information.
The Carbon Tracker Initiative report, Unburnable Carbon, calculates that only 31% of the world's currently indicated fossil fuel reserves, which equate to 2,860 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, could be burned for an 80% chance of keeping below a 2°C global temperature rise—commonly regarded as the threshold to avoid dangerous climate change. For a 50% chance of 2°C or less, only 38% could be burned. At least two-thirds of fossil fuel reserves cannot be monetized if we are to stay below 2°C of warming—creating "stranded carbon assets."
As CFOs are also now seen as organizational leaders and business partners, in addition to being the financial gatekeeper, finance leadership and professionalism apply to both stewardship and business partnership. Finance leadership requires an appreciation of the importance of the dual aspects of compliance and performance. Professional accountants need to live up to these expectations if they are to occupy finance leadership positions. It is now more important than ever for the accountancy profession to develop outstanding professionals who are well equipped to work in business and government, and well prepared to take on finance leadership roles.
Most accountants in business and the public sector, whether working in a small organization or serving as the CFO of an international corporation, face ethical dilemmas during their professional careers.
In a Compliance Week blog post, Editor-in-Chief Matt Kelly commented that MF Global demonstrates all the worst ways that senior management can let "tone at the top" go wrong and cites three sentences taken from a post-mortem published by a trustee investigating MF Global.
A critical determining factor of the status of a chief financial officer (CFO) is how they are positioned within his/her organization. Another is whether a CFO is a professional accountant. Examining status through these two lenses can give a sense of how strong the financial management and control of an organization is.
An increasing number of companies, including Coca Cola, British Telecommunications, and retail organizations Kingfisher, Ikea, and PUMA are striving to become net positive, which means that they will give back when it comes to the critical environmental and social factors upon which their business models depend.