The structure of risk management in leading Australian companies

Steven William Halliday

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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The primary research aim was to examine the organisational structure that is used to facilitate risk management in leading Australian companies, including an analysis of the tensions and strengths of integrating risk management with internal audit.
Agency, institutional, contingency, signalling theories and knowledge management were used to identify the reasons behind different corporate governance models for risk management in Australian companies.The study used a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods to explore the structure of risk management in leading Australian companies. A desk-top analysis explored the board committee arrangements across industry sectors. This was followed by a survey of the same companies to identify the reasons behind governance arrangements and why different models had been chosen. Interviews were then conducted to explore issues related to the governance of risk management.
Seventy three percent of S&P/ASX 200 companies govern risk management through the board audit committee. The reason for this is the natural synergy between audit and risk management, a knowledge management outcome. Underpinned by signalling and contingency environmental factors, 17% of leading Australian companies have a board risk committee separate from the audit committee. The study found a number of problems with that model. The study found that 10% of S&P/ASX 200 companies have no board risk committee. Thirteen percent of companies had no risk management function and eighteen percent of the S&P/ASX 200 Australian companies had no internal audit function.Leading Australian companies are not experiencing problems with finding appropriately qualified directors for, and sufficient time at, board audit committee meetings.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Business Administration
Awarding Institution
  • Charles Sturt University
  • Duncan, Rod, Co-Supervisor
  • Plummer, Kay, Co-Supervisor
Award date01 Oct 2013
Place of PublicationAustralia
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


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