NASBA Executive Vice President and COO Colleen Conrad represented NASBA at the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board’s 11th annual International Institute on Audit Regulation, held December 7-8 in Washington, D.C. Participants included approximately 75 officials from audit regulators in 39 non-U.S. jurisdictions along with 10 officials from international organizations.

PCAOB Member Lewis H. Ferguson underscored the need to improve the consistency of audit quality. He told the regulators: “In particular, we can push the firms to take actions to improve their cultures around quality and consistency of execution, to provide adequate coaching and training, to develop and monitor audit quality indicators, to improve their root cause analyses, to hold their partners and employees accountable for quality outcomes, to create proper incentive programs, and to focus on critical issues such as audit planning and time management.”

The meeting included panel discussions among audit regulators, academics, investor representatives and corporate governance experts from around the world. They focused on: key international developments – coordination among audit regulators; firm culture, auditor behavior and professional skepticism; financial fraud; and the evolution of firms and its impact on inspections.

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton introduced John C. Bogle, of Vanguard Group, to discuss “The Modern Corporation and the Public Interest.” Other speakers included: Benjamin W. Heineman, Jr., on creating a culture of integrity; David L. Yermack on blockchains and the auditing profession; and Eugene Soltes on potential improvements to corporate compliance and whistleblower programs.

PCAOB Director of International Affairs Bruce Wilson said, “This program is an important part of our international outreach and reflects our collaborative approach to working with our international counterparts.” An introductory session for new and developing audit regulators was held the day before the Annual International Institute.

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