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Unit information: Issues in Corporate Governance in 2019/20

Please note: Due to alternative arrangements for teaching and assessment in place from 18 March 2020 to mitigate against the restrictions in place due to COVID-19, information shown for 2019/20 may not always be accurate.

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Issues in Corporate Governance
Unit code LAWD30001
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Mr. Price
Open unit status Not open

LAWD20037 Company Law


LAWD20037 Company Law

School/department University of Bristol Law School
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law


This unit explores the key features of corporate governance. The focus is on UK corporate governance but, where relevant, a comparative angle is examined. The unit provides an overview of the economic and institutional dynamics that influence the use and control of decision-making power in publicly traded companies. The rights, duties and obligations of key participants in corporate governance (especially the board of directors and shareholders) are examined. Special attention is paid to the effectiveness of reforms designed to enhance managerial accountability, including institutional shareholder activism; the use of independent directors; audit and risk management techniques; the design and control of executive remuneration; hostile takeovers and the market for corporate control. There will also be seminars exploring corporate social responsibility, female representation on boards and post-crisis corporate governance reforms in the UK banking sector.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of this unit a successful student will be able to:

  • Restate accurately the law relevant to corporate governance debates in the UK;
  • Understand and critically evaluate the key concepts, issues and theoretical approaches relating to corporate governance debates in the UK;
  • Propose and defend various reform options in relation to above;
  • Clearly communicate ideas in written and verbal form, using appropriate language and concepts; and
  • Show an awareness of and appreciation of corporate governance debates in other jurisdictions eg EU, US, Japan.

Teaching details

20 lectures and 7 two-hour seminars

Assessment Details

1 x formative assessment (submitted for marking), plus additional informal formative feedback opportunities as indicated by the unit coordinator.

Formative assessments do not count towards final mark and can be optional.

2 x summative assessments: 2 x 2,000 word coursework. Summative assessments do count towards final mark. The assessments will assess all of the intended learning outcomes for this unit.

Reading and References

There is no single textbook for this course. We refer to a range of relevant books, papers and articles in the core reading for each seminar. However, you will note that for each seminar, the core reading includes chapters from the following two books, both of which offer good outlines of the relevant themes:

  • Mallin, Corporate Governance (5th edn., 2015, OUP)
  • B. Tricker, Corporate Governance: Principles, Policies, and Practices (3rd edition, 2015, OUP)