Pots and Kettles: Governance Practices of the Ontario Securities Commission
An analysis of the governance policies of the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is undertaken in light of that institution's drive to improve governance practices in the private sector. It turns out that the Commission itself does not practice many of the governance practices required and/or advocated for the corporate sector. Furthermore it is argued that governance policies necessary to resolve the principal - agent problem for the corporate sector are necessary to resolve that problem for a public sector regulator, but they are not sufficient. This is the result of the greater difficulty in monitoring the regulator because the objectives of the principals/electorate are more difficult to measure than profits, and those objectives are only loosely correlated with cash flows. The insistence on publicly available cost-benefit analyses for new and existing OSC initiatives is one method to improve monitoring.
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