Magazine article New Zealand Management

EDITOR'S LETTER : Governance - by Any Name

Magazine article New Zealand Management

EDITOR'S LETTER : Governance - by Any Name

Article excerpt

Byline: Ellen Read

If you look at the rules and regulations surrounding corporate governance in New Zealand, you will find plenty - from the Securities Commission, NZX, the Institute of Directors and others. One thing they all have in common is that they are largely reliant on interpretation. This makes sense, as you can't prescribe everything. But doesn't it also run the risk of a 'wide' interpretation that perhaps doesn't produce the best end result for our organisations and their stakeholders. I am open to persuasion on a solution for this but, in the course of looking into the different definitions and interpretations, I ran across this from UK scholar and advisor Professor Bob Garrett (reprinted with his kind permission).

"Governance itself can be traced back some three millennia to the ancient Greek 'kubernetes'. This means 'the steersman', the person who gives direction to a ship or organisation. This meaning flows through Latin and French language development and appears in Middle English in the Canterbury Tales. …

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