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Global Webinar on the COVID-19 Crisis and its Aftermath - Corporate Governance Implications and Policy Challenges

A summary report from the 24-hour Global Webinar organised by ECGI and the Global Corporate Governance Colloquia (GCGC) is now available (here). The videos of the sessions are also available to watch on the ECGI website and YouTube channel.


Testing priorities

The COVID-19 crisis is more complex and extreme than the 2008 crisis, due to its two-track nature involving both health and finance. However, it similarly has the potential to produce radically different outcomes across different jurisdictions, impacting on national sovereignty. This will largely depend on the strength of each jurisdiction’s health system and its commitment to effective social mitigation policies, along with the capacity and willingness of individuals to accept constraints on their traditional freedoms. Effective health and financial regulatory cooperation and coordination at both a national and international level are considered imperative. There is unlikely to be a simple end to the health crisis, and financial responses will inevitably lead to higher inflation during the recovery period. It is not a short-term crisis, but it will also create a range of opportunities for innovation and corporate acquisitions, along with the potential restoration of trust in banks and public institutions, depending on the prioritisation of health and finance decisions which will inevitably arise.

Discussing whether the regulatory techniques, which were effective in protecting Australia from the full impact of the global financial crisis, would be equally effective in the COVID-19 crisis, the opening session of the conference observed that the global financial crisis involved demand disruption, which could be mitigated by public spending, in the form of a very large stimulus package, whereas the COVID-19 crisis is primarily a supply shock, which cannot be addressed in the same way.

The panelists acknowledged recent changes to Australia’s foreign investment review rules now enable the government to scrutinize all foreign investment transactions, indicating that sovereign interests are paramount despite a simultaneous commitment to globalisation. This issue arose in a subsequent session which observed the pandemic as a ‘negative blow’ to globalisation, likely to result in the enactment of protectionist regulations, pointing to Regulation (EU) 2019/452 of 19 March 2019 which established a framework for the screening of foreign direct investments into the EU. These mechanisms are likely to be reinforced during the crisis. Going further, it was offered that the present crisis could put on hold the introduction of rules to improve corporate governance in controlled firms, reduce global mergers and acquisitions, reduce market supervision and increase state ownership around the world.

In Australia, the 2019 Banking Royal Commission and debate around climate change and sustainability had already weakened the idea that directors’ primary duty is to maximise profits for shareholders, even at the expense of other stakeholders. This idea also underpins some current international developments, involving the imposition of temporary restrictions on the payment of dividends by banks. It was observed that in the current crisis, Australian banks have acted as a community backstop in relation to social dislocation affecting landlords and tenants, and that the concept of “fairness” would be a key aspect of the continued debate on public versus private interests and responsibilities.

Another pertinent issue relates to the risk of personal liability to company directors for their corporation’s debts under Australia’s somewhat Draconian insolvent trading laws, which have recently been relaxed by the government in the face of COVID-19. The panelists observed that competition has also been significantly impacted, pointing to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) which has provided a number of urgent interim authorisations, permitting companies in particular sectors (e.g. supermarkets, banks, medical technology companies) effectively to engage in cartel conduct. The current crisis has therefore escalated existing cooperation initiatives (e.g. eradicating slavery) in the private sector, and also, cooperation between the government and the private sector although difficult prioritisation decisions remain.

Never waste a crisis

Moving to Japan and Korea, the second session of the conference considered implications for planning, CSR, contracts and succession. While pandemic-type risk appears similar to that of earthquakes or typhoons as its estimated frequency is low and the damage it causes can be enormous, the effectiveness of Business Continuity Planning (BCP), unlike in those natural disaster situations, might be limited, as a pandemic causes damage principally to the labour force, noting that the recovery speed from the damage must be controlled to prevent further infections.

A recurring theme throughout the conference was the inevitable challenge between investors’ demand and stakeholders’ (or sometimes between different stakeholders’) welfare. One aspect of corporate social responsibility (CSR) is mitigating negative externalities from business activities beyond legal requirements. In the current context, one of the major negative externalities to be mitigated is the spread of COVID-19. Interestingly, this has resulted in CSR in Japan to include the inducement of companies to close or cancel their shops and events voluntarily or to let their employees work from home, since Japanese law does not grant the government powers to impose curfews due to historical reasons. How voluntary it is, however is debatable, as directors who decide to keep their business open may not be fully protected by the business judgement rule, when for example the company is sued by their employee or customer who is infected by COVID-19.

Addressing the universal question of the applicability of the material adverse change (MAC) clause in contracts, the delivered answer is typically “it depends on the contract wording”, with perhaps the most important consideration to be whether the contract includes “carve-out” clauses, which exclude “general” political, economic or business conditions or changes from the MAC. The COVID-19 outbreak may belong to such “general” conditions, and thus in the deals with the carve-out provision, it is very unlikely to allow exit. The conference heard that M&A deals in the U.S. typically include carve-out clauses, while such clauses are very rare in the deals in Korea, Japan, and some European countries. However, it should be also recognised that, even in the deals without the carve-out clauses, courts in many jurisdictions do not easily allow a party to MAC-out. This was further discussed in a later US session.

The pandemic has created an opportunity for some, not least in relation to succession planning. In Korean Chaebol firms, where a controlling family owns a controlling block, family succession to the next generation is a crucial issue. It is challenging to inherit the business, because the tax rate on stock gifting in Korea is 60% of the value of stock. Thus, controlling families tend to gift stock when the stock price is at the bottom, which is now the case. Many controlling families plan to avail of this opportunity, and one family even cancelled the already announced gift and then announced a new gift at the reduced stock price caused by the COVID-19. Such gift cases do not harm the minority shareholders; they just harm the government—saving tax. Another opportunity for gift tax savings is the merger between the two firms—where one is listed and the other is non-listed—within the same corporate group.

Other considerations include the extent to which bailouts may inadvertently empower or subsidise controlling families in the countries where the controlling families are dominant, and the extent to which the National Pension Fund can or should be used to rescue stock market investors.

Moving to China, the third session heard that the Shanghai Stock Exchange took the initiative in 2019 to embrace companies with different shareholding structures and developing stages. Recently however, for both the regulator and stock exchanges, applying issuers must answer questions about the impacts of COVID-19, while new challenges now loom involving cross-border securities issuance and trade activities. With regard to private sector businesses, conflicts of interest among various stakeholders and how those interests have shifted post outbreak were again highlighted. Additionally, companies that contribute to the effort to curb the pandemic are considered by management to be contributing to CSR. This was echoed in the Singapore presentations in the same session, where it was argued that firms can benefit by stepping up on their social responsibilities as these activities can create valuable social capital with all of their stakeholders.

Another focus in Singapore was on the increasing importance of local and private assets managers in encouraging entrepreneurship by facilitating active and liquid markets for local entrepreneurs to exit, especially in the tech sector. Looking to past studies, it was suggested that the advisory role of boards, its size, and busy-ness are more important factors for resilience than its independence during a crisis. In a later session it was added that directors should take up their role as the stewards of the firms’ purpose during the crisis and beyond. There was caution surrounding the activity of share buy-backs noting flaws in the legal system which can be abused, thus amounting to market manipulation. This arose in a later (US) session where the question arose as to whether buy-backs are a form of self-dealing if the board collectively owns stock, or if a subset of directors’ own lots of stock and do not recuse themselves from the decision? It was also offered in this session that COVID-19 could be promoting the global rise of the state as a dominant shareholder and a muted market for corporate control.

Emergency response

Moving to Israel for the fourth session, the plight of start-ups in a time of crisis was considered. Start-ups are left particularly exposed and characterised as weak (lacking in reserves), risky (un-bankable), and statistically the least likely of business categories to survive. Furthermore, decreased valuations make them easier targets for acquisition by larger, cash rich, tech companies. The session explored the implications for this sector in Israel, Germany and the US.

The significant growth of the start-up technology sector in Israel has now left it exposed to a credit crunch as foreign investors withdraw as a result of the pandemic. The proposal for government intervention in this sector, currently consists of: (i) streamlining the existing infrastructure of grants by the Innovation Authority to smaller companies; (ii) providing loans with downside protection to large companies; and (iii) incentivising institutional investors to make debt or equity investments alongside venture capital investors in medium size firms. Another learning from the pandemic is to design more technology-driven solutions for managing epidemics in the future.

In Germany, the government recently announced a EUR 2 billion fund for start-ups which will provide additional funding for new financing rounds as co-investments with private investors. By that, the government avoids the problem of giving money directly to start-ups and the political problem of which one to choose. In addition, the fund provides private investment funds with additional public funding while facilitating finance for start-ups that do not have venture capital investment.

In the US, the general trend is for venture capital (VC) firms to “sit tight and see what happens” as this will also present a significant opportunity for those that are well capitalised to enter the market. In order to avail of funding under the Paycheck Protection Programme (PPP), some companies have been busy removing negative covenants, and removing all their control rights, while other VCs, even though eligible, decline to avail of this source of support on moral grounds as they do not wish to be seen taking money that they do not really need.

Examining the broader issue of directors’ duties, the session also took note of the Australian government’s recent initiative to introduce a statutory amendment suspending directors’ liability for “insolvent trading”, i.e., incurring obligations while the company is facing insolvency, with similar proposals being made in a growing number of countries. The panel considered this initiative as well as the broader theme of suspending or changing director duties in a time of systemic crisis that is likely to lead to financial distress and failure in numerous firms. The new safe harbour is intended to alleviate managers’ fears about conducting business in struggling companies.

The session also opened the topic of bankruptcy with an overview of the amendments to bankruptcy laws in Italy, France and Germany, noting how jurisdictions around Europe have responded by adjusting their bankruptcy laws in similar and yet different ways. Similarly, the panel considered the UK regime of wrongful trading and the government’s intention to suspend this type director liability, while other bases of liability remain intact. A broader review of director duties is currently under way. As in other sessions, a common concern was shared for other stakeholders in addition to creditors.

Moving to Germany, the fifth session acknowledged the response of the European Central Bank (ECB) in its efforts to safeguard its price stability mandate and financial stability more broadly. This includes: (1) broad-based asset purchases to address illiquidity and heightened volatility in core segments of euro area financial markets; (2) enhanced targeted longer-term refinancing operations (TLTROs) and a comprehensive set of collateral easing measures, ensuring that banks remain reliable carriers of the ECB’s monetary policy and continue lending to the real economy; and (3) central banks’ traditional role as a lender of last resort to solvent banks which induced the ECB to offer banks liquidity over longer horizons at the negative rate of the ECB’s deposit facility without any conditions attached. There was also some caution that without a coordinated fiscal policy response, imbalances in the performances of the economies of euro area member states will increase.

The second part of the session called for a framework to support SMEs in the COVID-19 crisis not by credit but through a mechanism which resembles equity financing. This would provide cash in return for a tax surcharge on profits, or an equivalent payment, as soon as the crisis is over and the firms are profitable again. The implied equity-like payment structure would reduce the leverage of affected companies, and if implemented at the European level, for example through a European Pandemic Equity Fund (EPEF), the stability of banks and the financial system of the euro zone would increase, in comparison to a lending scheme of similar size. This proposal also addresses the risk-sharing question posed in one of the later sessions. However, it was noted that alleviating a debt overhang problem in the capital structure of firms, would require a wealth transfer from the taxpayer to existing equity-holders which would give rise to issues such as voting rights, agency conflicts, criteria and conditions.

Moving to Sweden, the sixth session considered the Swedish response to the pandemic and how to potentially exit from the imposed restrictions across Europe. The data inconsistencies across countries were highlighted as a concern, along with the benefit of high trust for public institutions which is required in order to implement a softer lockdown. The significant decline in financial performance across industries suggests obvious behavioural changes even under a soft lockdown. It was noted that economic considerations typically form little or no part of health authorities’ analysis and so it falls to Swedish politicians to integrate the various expert perspectives. It was also suggested that foreign attention of Swedish policies may have overstated policy differences, while emphasising how an economy can benefit if productive capacity is maintained through a temporary crisis. With vaccine and treatments potentially further out of scope than an economy can endure, the benefits of immunity (perhaps for a year, possibly longer) combined with anti-body testing were raised. The coordination of policy at EU level was also recommended.

A second panel considered the perspectives of an institutional owner, corporate management and an employee trade union, in light of the various responses at this stage of the crisis. They underlined the urgency and uncertainty of the situation which requires a high level of stakeholder coordination and transparency, for example from the health authorities, in providing an adequate basis for future scenario modelling. They also cautioned against knee-jerk protectionist policies and political action which could cause indirect damage to business liquidity and access to capital markets. It was suggested that more could be done, such as assuming the fixed cost base of businesses in certain circumstances, as in Denmark, noting that it will be too late to rescue businesses after they have been made bankrupt, though not all businesses will survive. They also considered the risk-sharing implications for the costs of the crisis. This was also raised in a later session, that is, dividing the effects of shock to reduce impact on any one member of economy/polity with a view to minimising efficiency losses introduced by pandemic.

Switching to the UK, the next session delved into three key aspects (1) Impact of the COVID-19 crisis on small and medium enterprises (SMEs); (2) Business response to the pandemic with special focus on nature of ownership; and (3) Short-term and long-term legal and regulatory changes.

The session highlighted the importance of SMEs for economic recovery. Although they typically have lower cash reserves and reduced access to credit than larger firms, they are also more flexible and less integrated in the global supply chain. Some of the initiatives that are being implemented to support SMEs at EU level, and also in Portugal and the UK were discussed. This includes expanding the asset purchase programme by the European Central Bank (ECB), fine-tuning the collateral framework to allow banks to post more collateral to the ECB including loans given to SMEs, and adapting the regulatory and supervisory framework to avoid a collapse in lending to SMEs. It was emphasised that a targeted, local approach which provides accelerated payments is key to their survival, noting that the average cash buffer for SMEs (in the US) is 27 days.

A further panel in this session pointed to the importance of corporate purpose in determining the response of business during and after the pandemic, and the role that ownership, governance and measurement play in that regard. It also pointed to the care that should be taken in drawing conclusions too rapidly from the limited amount of evidence that is available to date. On the topic of conflicting interests, the role of long-term owners was underlined to be crucial in balancing the interests of all stakeholders. The topic of gender diversity was also raised, pointing to evidence that women have more empathetic traits towards other stakeholders.

Other recommendations include the introduction of profit measures which are able to capitalise investments made into critical human, social and natural capital, and positively impact share prices, while accepting a notion of materiality that is dynamic and closely linked to a corporation’s purpose. Furthermore, businesses should act responsibly with the public funds they receive for their revival and recognise their social license sufficiently. The three business responses to this crisis may include: (1) in the short term, the production of necessary health equipment; (2) in the medium term, recognising changes in lifestyle and consumer preferences in a post-crisis scenario; and (3) for the long term, creating value propositions that lead to inclusive and sustainable growth, noting that companies with a purpose can better respond to this crisis and pave way for greater societal benefits.

A final panel is this session outlined key areas of corporate law which should be tweaked to help corporations to weather the current storm, in the form of special temporary default rules, suggesting that requirements for issuance of new equity or debt should be relaxed during the crisis. Echoing previous comments, it was offered that the extreme uncertainty business leaders are going through requires that laxer director liability standards be applied for decisions taken during the crisis. Addressing the exposed position of many firms, it was recommended that takeover defences must be temporarily allowed to thwart low-ball hostile bids which would distract managers from their task of steering their companies through the crisis. The panel also predicted that the crisis will have an impact on corporate ownership, predicting a return to conglomerates, or ‘keiretsu’-type arrangements which provide an element of mutual insurance against, and facilitate coordination in, a crisis.

Crossing the Atlantic to the United States, the eighth session considered the response of the Federal Reserve to the crisis, offering several recommendations for current and future improvements. These included direct loans from the government, via the IRS framework, with specific eligibility criteria; restructuring the financial system; new disclosure rules to circumvent manipulative short-selling and; the advent of ‘systematic stewardship’ to broaden the concerns of management while still focusing on the financial return to investors, for example in providing adequate government capacity and public goods creation, thereby reducing systematic risk. The session also examined the scenario for Material Adverse Change (MAC) clauses in the US, noting that the uncertainty around the judicial resolution of MAC litigation may even be a feature not a bug, providing a framework and impetus for renegotiation.

Bankruptcy triage

Addressing the recurring theme of conflicts, the next session focused on bankruptcy, noting that contracts remain the most important tool for constraining these conflicts. Since creditor-shareholder conflicts are most acute when the more distressed or financially at risk a company is, the pandemic will sharply increase conflicts of that kind. Practically speaking, decisions to enter bankruptcy or even to take risky decisions that might be ex-ante against creditor interests will not be second-guessed by courts, even if the company is clearly insolvent and even if the actions harm creditors. Depending on how long the pandemic lasts, some companies may well engage in self-dealing while insolvent, without realising it. Furthermore, Section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code's silence on rules for sales out of bankruptcy permits judges to "make up" those rules, which govern in roughly one third of bankruptcies, which can be a big problem if the federal government is a major creditor of a bankrupt company.

The session examined at length how overwhelmed or clogged bankruptcy courts could lead to stagnation and possibilities of debtor opportunism. Bankruptcy assesses the debtor’s need to stop payments to creditors and to affirm or reject a relationship with a supplier or customer, but a supplier may be more vital to the economy than to the debtor. Therefore, the court’s capacity to make supplier relationships superior to most pre-bankruptcy obligations would help to get commerce going again, but this depends on the courts not being clogged.

A further problem that was highlighted is if most public firms end up with a major case of “debt overhang,” it could result in capital structures exacerbating a tendency to low investment and low re-hiring. The solution is usually to recapitalise, however if courts are clogged, in-bankruptcy recapitalisations will be harder and slower, and out-of-bankruptcy recapitalisations will also be impeded, because the threat of a bankruptcy filing helps to bring the parties together to a deal. There is also a risk that a significant number of SMEs will be (perhaps needlessly) liquidated, unless bankruptcy proceedings adapt. One recommendation was to use the new (untested) small business process which softens absolute priority as conventionally understood, and makes restructure more possible, as a template that picks up the new filings of viable businesses. It was also noted that bankruptcy can get administrative priority for new contracts, thereby facilitating new commerce when there is a macro incentive to facilitate it.

On the issue of volume, noting that resources will already be impeded by the pandemic, the recommendations included appointing more judges and trustees; reallocating cases across bankruptcy courts; segmenting types of bankruptcies in different courts; or devising system-wide interventions to address the mass of bankruptcies. Based on past data, bankruptcy courts would have to work 60-hour workloads (at historic pace of clearances) for the next year to clear the surge that is now expected, with a lag from unemployment claims of 1-2 quarters.

Another point raised was that current COVID-19 policies treat bankruptcy law as a last resort for stressed businesses and consumers, which is a sensible approach for small businesses and consumers, but not for large corporations. One way to ease clogging is to offer liquidity, forbearance and forgiveness to households and small businesses; stabilise now, and restructure later. Further, the small-business financing offered by the Fed and under the CARES Act, should not exclude financing for firms in bankruptcy. For large corporations, however, bankruptcy should be a front-line policy tool and government action should save businesses (and jobs), but not investors.

The session also observed that Chapter 11 is very costly for small and medium-sized businesses (up to 30% of firm value) and a substantial majority of them do not successfully reorganise. They are also more likely to liquidate if the court is congested, while the reorganisation of large firms is more costly and takes longer. The market for “debtor in possession” (DIP) financing is under huge stress. Debtors, especially medium-sized companies, may have difficulty obtaining financing in the current environment. The question was posed whether federal government should buy a slice of DIP (bankruptcy) loans? Another proposal was to introduce “cookie cutter” pre-packaged bankruptcies, which would be somewhat similar to a “Super Chapter 11” proposal by Joseph Stiglitz but would not require any legislative change. It was further suggested that 1978 bankruptcy law is out of date and has left too much discretion to bankruptcy judges. Another suggestion was the modification of the trust indenture act or an adoption of Chapter 16. The panel called on the government to address congestion and “flatten the bankruptcy curve”—as much as possible, in order to improve outcomes, perhaps using a form of bankruptcy triage to address the volume.

Additional observations included that in this time of crisis, judges will routinely be ruling on whether probability of performance is high enough, but they will routinely be overoptimistic, which will induce more Chapter 11 filings than would otherwise occur. There is also likely to be a lot more short-term contracting over the crisis, as contract parties seek to avoid the risk of "assumption" in bankruptcy. "Fire-sales" of insolvent businesses will likely increase, into an illiquid market, which could lead to the spiralling down of asset prices within a given industry, even for solvent but illiquid companies. There will also be more collusive auctions of companies that enter bankruptcy. A final observation was that foreign bankruptcy regimes often favour liquidation over rehabilitation and very few regimes allow DIP financing to help viable companies restructure. In Germany, UK, and Australia, they are changing the rules already, but more may be needed.

Struggle and evolve

The final session of the conference offered some crisis management learnings from a practical perspective. The discussion brought together some of the key issues from earlier sessions, such as the conflict of interests between investors and stakeholders, the importance of business continuity planning, an effective board, stewardship of the firm’s purpose, and the opportunity for social capital.

It was offered that having a trusted Crisis Management team in place before the crisis happens is key to effective crisis management, and then to rely on the company values. Support employees first, then customers. The current crisis is unique in many ways and is a corporation’s chance to help customers to create opportunities. The Board’s role in Risk Management becomes more critical during and following a crisis, with experience. The Board should help design programs to anticipate crises, for example, setting a program for a distributed workforce continuity plan. Boards will have to consider new technologies (for example, DocuSign instead of a wet signature), executive compensation constraints and other possible adjustments to a new business reality.

Never waste a crisis. Fast track solutions to help customers. Progress is happening faster, keep the momentum after the crisis passes. There is an opportunity for government and business to work together to innovate faster and help address problems for society. In a crisis, empathy and the humanitarian part of leadership is elevated and it creates more inclusion. Corporations should embrace this opportunity for inclusion. For employees, in the interest of safety, usual practices will need to be changed as social distancing will stay with us.

Lastly, no one anticipated that the whole world would be impacted at the same time and now Boards must be ready for it. Companies must become more flexible with managing an at-home workforce. Companies must get creative to react to this extreme situation, which will cause people to struggle, and then evolve.

Calling for oversight

The second part of the session considered the conditions for insider trading as a result of the pandemic, noting that it has created an unprecedented set of opportunities for insider traders due to: (1) the frequent occurrence of discrete events that generate material non-public information capable of being used to generate significant, risk-adjusted economic trading profits; (2) the frequent public release of such information after a suitable lag time in which insider trading can occur; (3) significant market volatility (market swings) caused by the release of the information; (4) a social and economic climate in which people are not paying close attention to the trading activity of others but are preoccupied by concerns about the COVID-19 virus itself; (5) the crisis hit Wall Street and Main Street at the same time - it did not migrate to Wall street or from Wall Street to Main Street, and thus there are insider trading activities in both the financial and the non-financial sectors of the economy.

To summarise, the amount of criminal insider trading activity will be determined by the standard equation (anticipated severity of the punishment X the risk of being caught), adjusted for the supply of trading opportunities which is huge right now. There has been insider trading during the crisis in abundance by both politicians and private sector corporate actors. The politicians generally have been selling, while the corporate officers and directors have been buying. Due to incentive effects the buying by insiders is good for society and for shareholders, the selling by politicians creates very bad incentives. The following policies were therefore recommended for adoption: (1) No trading at all during pandemic by politicians and others subject to the rules articulated in the Stop Trading On Congressional Knowledge Act; (2) Rules for Insiders, defined as, officers, directors, 10% shareholders, with no selling by officers and directors during pandemic (buying is fine), as long as it is publicly announced, and increase the frequency of Item 4 disclosures by officers, directors and 10% shareholders under Section 16(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 as amended, from once every six months to weekly.

The interaction between corporate governance and real governance was considered in the closing statements of the conference. This highlighted the long running tension whereby governments use corporate governance as a tool to ensure that all groups are considered by companies, and to use them for a broader range of outcomes. The problem then arises at a time of crisis, where the corporate governance model lacks the capacity for excess and is not designed to provide for the circumstances that have arisen, and the government is not adequately structured to fill that need for extra capacity and response. Other issues touched upon included the issue of locking up voting control in a relatively small group of investors that can make money without a management fee, and the significant remit of politicians and executive committees in allocating vast resources with conflicts of interest and weak oversight.

The conference closed with some words of gratitude for the speakers, attendees and organisers, noting that the goal of connecting a community of scholars, policymakers and practitioners to circulate and stimulate ideas for the common good had certainly been achieved.


A detailed report from the sessions can be accessed here.

Videos of the sessions are available here.

Reference articles and papers are available below with more publications by ECGI Research Members available here.





GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Fed to the Rescue: Bankruptcy’s Role in the COVID-19 Crisis (Edward R. Morrison, Andrea C. Saavedra)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Wall Street CARES!: Who Gets the Hidden Subsidies Under the CARES Act? (John C. Coffee, Jr.)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: The ECB’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic (Isabel Schnabel)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: How Banks and Fintechs Can Help Small Businesses Survive COVID-19 (Todd Baker, Kathryn Judge)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Easing the economic aftermath of a global pandemic (Mark Roe, John Coates)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Bankruptcy and the coronavirus (David Skeel)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Extreme times, Extreme Measures: Pandemic-Resistant Corporate Law (Luca Enriques)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series- Fed to the Rescue: Unprecedented Scope, Stretched Authority (Lev Menand)

Insider Trading Data Reveals Pandemic Is a Time for Questioning, Not Answering
 (Renée Adams, Attila Balogh)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: Corona and Financial Stability 4.0: Implementing a European Pandemic Equity Fund (Arnoud Boot, Elena Carletti, Hans-Helmut Kotz, Jan Pieter Krahnen, Loriana Pelizzon ,Marti Subrahmanyam)

GCGC/ECGI Global Webinar Series: How to Rescue Startups During the Pandemic (Dorothea Ringe, Wolf-Georg Ringe)



Elaine McPartlan

General Manager

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)



ECGI is an international scientific non-profit association providing a forum for debate and dialogue between academics, legislators and practitioners, focusing on major corporate governance issues. 

The Global Corporate Governance Colloquia (GCGC) is a global initiative to bring together the best research in law, economics and finance relating to corporate governance at a yearly conference held at 12 leading universities in the Americas, Asia and Europe.

This initiative also included the organising support of Monash University, IDC Herzilya and Tel Aviv University.

ECGI would like to thank all of the speakers panelists and attendees for contributing to this event.







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