Ethical Corporate Governance

Strategic Finance, November 2008 | Go to article overview

Ethical Corporate Governance


The topic of ethics and compliance has become an important issue in companies of all shapes and sizes and in all industries. It is critical for anyone involved in corporate governance, oversight, and even day-to-day to operations. As recent corporate scandals have demonstrated, a lapse in ethical conduct not only has the potential to cost a company and its investors millions--even billions--it can even send the most well-established and respected company to the brink of bankruptcy.

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To prevent that, those involved with governance processes in particular must keep abreast of the recent developments affecting organizational ethics and compliance. That's why Ethics and Compliance: Challenges for Internal Auditing, written by Curtis C. Verschoor and published by the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), explains how ethics and compliance are vital to strengthening the governance process. [Disclosure: Verschoor also is the editor of the monthly ethics column for Strategic Finance.] With the increase of legislative and regulatory measures aimed at keeping organizations in line, this book identifies who is responsible for monitoring the ethical climate of the company, explains how this can be done effectively, and discusses how it all relates to the role of the internal audit function. Ethics and Compliance outlines the responsibilities for the internal auditor, audit committee members, corporate counsel, external auditors, and all executive management involved in governance and internal controls.

Other major topics covered include:

* Ethics and compliance as related to IIA's International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing. Practitioners of internal auditing need to understand the necessity for complying with these standards in the performance of their duties.

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