Annual Grant Program Report – 2017 Round Research Outcomes

The last blog reporting on the final research outcomes of the EU Centre for Global Affairs Annual Grant Program reported to date covers the 2017 allocation round. The final grant reports were received from the following grant recipients.

Associate Professor David Brown, the Adelaide Law School organised a research symposium on “Business Rescue Law Reform in Australia and the EU”. The symposium was hosted on 16 March 2017 by the Regulation of Corporations, Insolvency and Taxation (ROCIT) unit at the University of Adelaide, in conjunction with support from the EU Centre for Global Affairs. More details are available in the event report HERE.

Panel of speakers included:

  • Professor Gerard McCormack, Professor of International Business Law, University of Leeds, School of Law. Presentation on “Business Restructuring in Europe: Making a Fresh Start”.
  • Professor Michael Veder, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Faculty of Law. Presentation on “Proposed pre-insolvency restructuring laws: is Europe on the Right Track?”.
  • Mr David Proudman, Partner, Johnson Winter & Slattery, Sydney. Presentation on “Reviewing the Tool Box- the Arrium Experience”.
  • Associate Professor Jason Harris, the University of Technology Sydney, Faculty of Law. Presentation on “The efficacy of Voluntary Administration – an empirical approach”.
  • Associate Professor David Brown, Adelaide Law School, the University of Adelaide, Co-Director of ROCIT – commentator.

Further outcomes from the symposium have included a forthcoming book chapter co-authored by Professor Veder based on his lecture: M Veder and A Mennens, “Preventive Restructuring Frameworks”, in Busch, Avgouleas and Ferrarini (eds), Capital Markets Union in Europe, OUP, Oxford, early 2018. Jason Harris’s presentation was in furtherance of his PhD on “Voluntary Administration, Is it Still fit for Purpose”, under the Principal supervision of Associate Professor David Brown at Adelaide Law School.

Issues identified in the symposium in relation to the EU restructuring draft Directive formed part of the course material for Associate Professor Brown’s recent course, Comparative Corporate Rescue, which is part of the Graduate Certificate in Insolvency Law programme. Associate Professor Brown is presenting a paper at the Academic Committee of the Banking and Financial Services Law Association workshop in Sydney, 30 November 2017, on “Class Composition in Schemes of Arrangement”, building on some of the issues raised in relation to the use of Schemes in the EU proposal, and in the UK.

Associate Professor Pamela Kent, Accounting and Finance, Adelaide Business School, The University of Adelaide prepared a conference paper “Incentives for Prior Period Error Corrections under IAS 8” that was accepted for 28th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues on Maui, Hawaii, 6-9 November 2016. Associate Professor Kent further attended the European Accounting Association in May 2017 and presented a paper at the conference and had discussions with colleagues from European, US, Canadian, UK and Australian universities. A copy of the presentation is available HERE. Discussions were held with:

  • Professor Ellie Chapple, Queensland University of Technology Business School (Greenhouse gas emission disclosures).
  • Professor Ann Tarca, The University of Western Australia Business School (Audit fees).
  • Professor Dennis van Liempd, The University of Southern Denmark, Department of Business and Economics (Accounting Culture in Denmark).
  • Professor Greg Shailer, The Australian National University College of Business & Economics (Social responsibility reporting in Europe).
  • Professor Ken Trotman, The University of New South Wales Business School (Auditing in Europe).
  • Professor Jere Francis, The University of Missouri, the Trulaske College of Business (Auditing in Europe).
  • Professor Gordon Richardson, The University of Queensland Business School (Social responsibility reporting in Europe).

The key findings presented in the paper are that this research indicates there is substantial overlap between the factors associated with earnings corrections and those identified as determinants of earnings management. Results show that error adjustments reported under IAS 8 are significantly associated with the ratio of CEO cash bonus to salary, poor performance and change of CEO. These results suggest that certain companies are using IAS 8 as a method for earnings management.

Associate Professor Kent plans to work further on the paper and with the data set and expects to submit it to an internationally refereed journal by June 2018. Another paper is expected to be submitted to a journal by September 2018.

Dr Nengye Liu, the Adelaide Law School travelled to Hobart, Tasmania between 5-7 July 2017 and spoke at the “Depths and Surfaces: Understanding the Antarctic Region through the Humanities and Social Sciences” Conference, which was convened by the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research’s Humanities and Social Sciences Expert Group.

In 2016 Dr Liu travelled to Hobart and observed the 35th annual Meeting of the Commission for Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR). During this trip he held a number of meetings with key representatives from the Secretariat of the CCAMLR, Antarctic Ocean Alliance and the Chinese delegation, as well as leading Australian Antarctic governance experts. Dr Liu also travelled to Canberra, where he met:

  • Professor Donald Rothwell from Australian National University College of Law;
  • Professor Anne-Marie Brady from University of Canterbury, New Zealand as well as
  • Dr Scott Wyatt from the EU Delegation to Australia.

As part of his research project on “The EU and the Conservation of Marine Living Resources in Antarctica” Dr Liu prepared an article “How China Came in from the Cold to help set up Antarctica’s Vast New Marine Park” for the Conversation. It attracted over 7500 readers globally. Radio Adelaide and the Wire Radio subsequently interviewed Dr Liu about the establishment of Ross Sea marine protected area:

The final paper is expected to be finalised and submitted to a leading peer-reviewed journal by December 2017.

Australian Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM) provided their findings and a final report on “Innovative, best practice examples of public-private partnerships for economic development and regional co-operation involving the co-operative and mutual sector in Europe” project.

The research was intended to deepen an understanding of the legislative, regulatory, social and organisational factors that influence the development of robust and innovative co-operative sectors in order to inform BCCM’s contribution to the important current debate in Australia about the delivery of human services.

As a result of the project BCCM has provided evidence from the EU to inform Australian governments on best practice in legislative reforms and regulatory regimes to enable the Co-operative and Mutual Enterprises (CME) sector to play a greater role. BCCM has also provided evidence to the Australian government on the ways in which this best practice can be further leveraged to assist in its aid and development program in the Asia-Pacific region. Recent Federal Government reviews have provided support for an increased engagement with the CME sector in public policy reform. The evidence from the EU gathered in the published report, will make a vital contribution to the developing field of Third Sector research in Australia.

The final research report was published by the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals in March 2017.


The EU Centre for Global Affairs expects four more final grant reports of the 2017 allocation round from:

  • Dr Adam Loch, Centre for Global Food and Resources, The University of Adelaide.
  • Dr Karlson Hargroves, Sustainable Development Fellow, Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation and Innovation Centre, The University of Adelaide.
  • Professor Jennifer Rutherford, Director, the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice, The University of Adelaide.
  • Associate Professor David Brown, the Adelaide Law School (second grant).
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