Global convergence

The first public meeting of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) took place at a hotel in London in April 2001. Part of its arrangements were that, like the FASB, it would set standards ‘in the sunshine’ – meetings of the Board would be held in public when dealing with standards (but not administrative matters). The public gallery was very full as many of the ‘great and the good’ of international accounting came along to see the start of this major development. Just like the original IASC the Board was situated in London (there had been a brief flirtation with the idea of being based in Lille, in northern France, but this failed to gain traction). Just like the original IASC, the Board had a British head.

The new Board was chaired by David Tweedie, previously a partner in KPMG and then chairman for 10 years of the UK standard-setter. Of the original 14 members, only four did not have English as their mother tongue. Two of the Board members were former members of the FASB (Jim Leisenring and Tony Cope) while three others (Mary Barth, Tom Jones and Bob Herz) had been closely involved with US standard-setting. Tricia O’Malley was a former chairman of the Canadian standard-setter. Bob Herz subsequently left the IASB to become chairman of the FASB. The North American input was considerable. In addition, many of the members had also participated in the G4+1 group of standard-setters, an informal working group for anglophone national standard-setters ...

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