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A New Chapter Begins

23 August 2019 by Sara Drake

A New Chapter Begins

Changes and innovative plans for the Institute will secure our place as a professional body for the future

Our new membership year gets into full swing as summer draws to a close. In August, we were busy renewing memberships, releasing exam results, supporting student progression and recruiting the first cohort of students onto our new qualifying programme. A number of initiatives will start in September that will create a new chapter for the Institute. This is not change for change’s sake; we’re engaged in a robust process of review and renewal to secure our future as a sustainable, capable and innovative professional body for the 21st Century.

This year we shall become The Chartered Governance Institute. This change, approved at the 2018 AGM by members of our nine divisions, is designed to increase understanding of what we do, demonstrate our relevance as demand for qualified professionals continues to rise and support membership growth.

A Supplemental Charter for our new name comes into force in September 2019. This brings new post-nominals, which we will be applying across all our activities with immediate effect. On a personal level, members have the flexibility to decide when they adopt new post-nominals. The International Council which governs the Institute has provided a period in which FCIS, ACIS and CIS (Affiliated) may continue to be used. This extends to GradICSA too and runs from now until 31 December 2023. None of this affects members’ professional designation: Chartered members may continue to call themselves Chartered Secretary, or Chartered Governance Professional, or both.

In transitioning to our new name, we have many stakeholders to bring with us, both within our membership and in our relationships with governments, regulators, employers and educators. So whilst you will see the International Council adopting a new brand in the autumn, the UKRIAT Division is taking a phased approach. We are initially retaining ICSA in our logo, alongside the adoption of ‘The Chartered Governance Institute’, to ensure that the connection between the two is made securely.

Becoming the Chartered Governance Institute positions us as the home for governance professionals enabling us to take up new opportunities as demand for good governance increases across all sectors of the economy. A fundamental part of this process is to understand what our members, students and subscribers think of what we do and how we do it. To that end, we are carrying out a survey in early September and we hope that as many people as possible will embrace the opportunity to engage and give us their views. The survey will be distributed by the end of August, and closes on 20th September. We’ll be reporting on the feedback, and how we intend to apply it, in October.

Our Annual Conference was a platform for many thought provoking conversations about the future of governance and the governance profession. We will be developing some of these themes more fully across the year as part of our research and thought leadership programme.

In September we will be publishing dates for a season of six workshops which will pick up on the popular theme of Company Secretary as Changemaker. This series will explore different aspects of change making as part of the expanding remit of governance professionals. The highlights of each workshop will be featured in this magazine and the season will culminate in the publication of a practical, action-oriented report. Next year’s Annual Conference will be called Governance 2020, for which super early bird tickets are now available. Programme development is already underway and sessions will be dedicated to navigating the new governance landscape, with dynamic speakers, panels and guidance on purpose, ESG, sustainability, technology and reporting and more.

We are proud to be finalists in two categories at this year’s Association Awards where we have been shortlisted for Best Association Partnership for our work on professionalising school governance with the National Governance Association, and Best Association Team for those who come together across the Institute to deliver the Annual Conference. We are also working to make the Annual Awards on 27 November our best yet.

This year there is a new category recognising a company secretary who is making a real difference to the profession through their work in developing the next generation of governance professionals. If there is someone you think should be recognised for this award or one of our other established categories, nominations are open until 13 September.

Post-nominals explained

FCIS = FCG
ACIS = ACG
CIS (Affiliated) = CG (Affiliated)
GradICSA = GradCG

Sara Drake is CEO of ICSA: The Governance Institute

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