The Chief Value Officer

The Chief Value Officer

Accountants Can Save the Planet

Integrated Reporting is having a profound impact on corporate thinking and reporting. Value is being assessed on the basis of the sources of value creation used by an organisation and not through a financial lens alone.  In Chief Value Officer:  Accountants Can Save the Planet, Mervyn King, a global corporate governance and reporting leader, challenges some of the systemic issues preventing organisations from managing in an integrated value-creation way.

The shareholder-centric governance model, currently favoured by most companies, will not result in changes to corporate behaviour that can create value in a sustainable manner. The book, therefore, firmly places the accountant in the position of changemaker – the finance professional today should be more of a value officer than a financial officer. Consequently, the Chief Finance Officer should be known as the Chief Value Officer.

This book explains this new approach. It encapsulates the essential reasons for adopting integrated reporting, explains its application to date and proposes the next steps needed to achieve change that will improve business, social and environmental sustainability.

A brand new book, ‘Chief Value Officer: Accountants Can Save the Planet' by Mervyn King with Jill Atkins (Greenleaf Publishing, December 2016), radically redefines the role of accountants.... This book is a rich source for the Ethics in Higher Education programme, demonstrating as it does how professions must and can be transformed into professions that create long term value for society. What is true for accountants, is true for engineers, economists, architects, doctors, and so on. on 1 Feb 2017

Book review: Chief Value Officer – Accountants Can Save The Planet

Certainly anyone interested in the communication of business information, in the widest sense, or who works in the field professionally, would benefit from reading this book.

Currently, too much corporate information is given in coded, and often impenetrable, language that’s designed to meet the letter rather than the spirit of regulatory requirements.

It would be refreshing if corporate performance were to begin being communicated in a way in which the layman could understand it.

Perhaps integrated reporting is a step along the way; and the CVO acronym will one day become as well-known as CFO and COO, on the seas of the Pythons’ mythical wide Accountancy.


International Investment on 30 Nov 2016 Gerry Brown

This book is a "must read” for every director, every CFO aka CVO, every accountant, as well as all stakeholders with high expectations for tomorrow’s companies to create value in responsible and sustainable ways.


Olivia Kirtley, President, International Federation of Accountants

If anyone has doubts about the transformational characteristics of sustainability, the author brilliantly demonstrates how influential the concept of sustainability has become. Organizations either adapt or face the consequences of a silo mentality; a refusal to implement the necessary and unstoppable changes presented in the idea of integrated thinking and reporting threatens the long-term sustainability of businesses and affects their relationships with stakeholders. Are the accountants and the Chief Value Office in charge of bringing and implementing “the change”? That remains to be seen.

Cesar Poveda, author and book critic

This book is very powerful in the context of the next phase of the IIRC's strategy, which places corporate governance front and centre. The evolution of the finance profession is extremely well articulated, from Chief Finance Officer to Chief Value Officer….  It is a vital next step in governance. The more into the book you read, the more it feels like a manifesto for 21st-century corporate governance.

Paul Druckman, Former CEO, International Integrated Reporting Council


Chapter 1: History of the Limited Liability Company
Chapter 2: The Ownerless Company
Chapter 3: The Duties of a Director
Chapter 4: The Exclusive and the Inclusive Approach to Governance
Chapter 5: From Financial Reporting to Corporate Reporting
Chapter 6: Sustainability Reporting and the Establishment of the IIRC
Chapter 7: Shifts in the Corporate World
Chapter 8: Integrated Thinking and the Integrated Report
Chapter 9: The New Order
Chapter 10: Value Creation
Chapter 11: The Benefits of IR
Chapter 12: The Role of Accountants in Creating Value
Chapter 13: The Chief Value Officer
Chapter 14: The Training of Accountants

Annex 1: The International Integrated Reporting Council Framework
Annex 2: The Crown Estate
Annex 3: The Standard Bank of South Africa
Annex 4: The General Electric Company
Annex 5: The Chartered Institute of Public Relations
Annex 6: Sanford
Annex 7: Sun International

MERVYN KING is Chairman of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and Chairman Emeritus of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). He is also Professor Extraordinaire at the University of South Africa.

You may also be interested in...