Why Culture Matters: On Governance Scandals and Corporate Malfeasance in Japan

posted by Nicholas Benes on July 09, 2016

Found in Japan, categorized in International Trade and Investment

Tags: Nicholas Benes Japan Japan’s Corporate Governance Code

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It is objectively undeniable in the last 18 months, the (Governance) Code has unleashed a major change within many Japanese companies, by giving reform-minded executives a set of principles to point to...


As the initial proposer and a behind-the-scenes advisor on Japan’s Corporate Governance Code, I am naturally pleased with the progress that the country has made in the past two years. This is of course relative to the rather low bar that was set by the previous fifteen years in which we governance advocates made comparatively little progress, against enormous resistance from the industrial lobby.

About Nicholas Benes

Nicholas Benes heads up The Board Director Training Institute of Japan, a government-certified nonprofit specializing in director training. Trained as a lawyer and MBA, he was an investment banker at JP Morgan for 11 years, after which he established a path-breaking M&A advisory boutique in Japan. A fluent speaker of Japanese, Mr. Benes has sat on a number of corporate boards and has been active in policy advocacy in Japan. In 2013, he proposed that the creation of a corporate governance code be included in the LDP’s growth strategy. He then advised members of the diet and the FSA, with regard to the drafting process and the content of Japan’s first corporate governance code.

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