Presentation & Discussion

“How the ASX has poisoned business ethics”

Presentation by Shann Turnbull

Ethical business requires knowing the identity of the people you do business with. But the ASX requires shares to be traded anonymously, and this includes its own shares. Worse still, the identity of share traders can be price sensitive data. Traders could also be insiders, brokers, short-sellers, money launders or terrorists. Both the practices of the ASX and its governance principles have misled regulators and poisoned Australian Business Culture. A problem identified by Royal Commissioners and others like Senior Counsel Bergin. Directors and auditors systemically lie about their so-called “independence”. The Cadbury Committee made fundamental mistakes providing a case study of good people promoting unethical practices. Overseas there are ethical directors who would never chair a meeting at which they present their accounts to be held accountable. Professional associations, scholars and even ethicists ignore or even support these problems and so fail to consider solutions presented.

Dr Shann Turnbull is the Principal of the International Institute for Self-governance. He qualified as an Electrical Engineer in Tasmania, and has a BSc from Melbourne University, and an MBA from Harvard. His PhD from Macquarie University Sydney established the science of governance in any specie. He has worked as a business entrepreneur founding a number of enterprises including two public mutual funds and three firms that became publicly traded.

In 1975 he co-authored the world’s first educational qualification for company directors and wrote “Democratising The Wealth Of Nations”. In 1977 he was commissioned by the Australian Government to undertake the first economic analysis of Aboriginals, and in 1991 he advised on employee privatisation in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and China. He is prolific author on reforming the theories and practices of capitalism by adopting the practices of nature to achieve sustainability.

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