17 November 2022 — Publication

Comparing European corporate governance models

Comparing European corporate governance models

This publication explores the different corporate governance systems based on a survey of 17 European countries. We identify significant differences in national legislation and practice to lay the groundwork for EU sustainable corporate governance initiatives to be well integrated into the national corporate structures.

The climate and environmental crisis have made it undeniable that business and sustainability are interrelated. Corporate governance is one of the most powerful tools to implement sustainable targets for companies. European initiatives such as CSRD (Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive), CSDDD (Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive), and ESRS (European Sustainability Reporting Standards) strongly depend on good corporate governance. A better understanding of the corporate governance systems across Europe will help ensure the effective implementation of sustainability-related legislation.

The paper looks into the following:

  • board of directors: structure, composition and legal framework
  • board remuneration and evaluation
  • internal controls and transparency
  • shareholders’ and stakeholders’ roles