PracticeConsultingBig firms group targets training

Big firms group targets training

The Global Steering Committee, until recently a shadowy grouping of the world's largest seven firms, is to turn its attention to education and begin work on 'harmonising' accountancy syllabuses across the globe.

In an exclusive interview with Accountancy Age, the committee’s French chairman Jacques Manardo has revealed the committee will shortly establish a special working group to begin work on education, although he is keen to make clear it will be a ‘huge task’.

Education forms one of four central planks in a GSC action plan finalised in 1999 to improve standards when the firms decided accountancy was in need of a global player to drive improvements.

Accountancy Age first revealed the strategic influence of the GSC when it disclosed in January how the committee was the power behind the International Federation of Accountants’ move to create a Forum of Firms to improve global standards.

Nominally an IFAC body, the forum is firmly under the control of the committee with longstanding GSC member Karl Ernst Knorr, of BDO in Germany, taking on the chairmanship.

The latest moves on syllabuses could see the Big Five, plus BDO and Grant Thornton, put their stamp firmly on the training and education of accountants across the world. Jacques Manardo said: ‘Education is a key ingredient for success because if you do not have properly educated people you have problems.’

The GSC will be looking at the ‘vast lack of coherence’ in accountancy qualifications around the world. A key task will be to tackle how international accounting standards are embedded into education and training programmes.

Also on the GSC’s agenda is what it is calling the Helping Countries Action Plan designed to aid less developed countries make significant improvements in their accounting and audit standards.

Links

Forum of firms must act for our benefit

Fears rise over ‘firms regulating firms’

Big firms in standards control bid

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