Title: Restoring trust in public institutions and the financial system

Authors: Murray Bryant; Throstur Olaf Sigurjonsson; Már Wolfgang Mixa

Addresses: Ivey Business School, Western University, 1255 Western Road, London, Ontario, Canada ' Reykjavik University, Menntavegur 1, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland; Copenhagen Business School, Porcelaenshaven, 2000 Frederiksberg, Denmark ' Reykjavik University, Menntavegur 1, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland

Abstract: Control systems rely jointly upon the rule of law and firm, system and government level governance processes. When these elements fail, the glue of society, trust, is broken. Consequently, if trust is broken there needs to be a concerted effort on the part of all market participants to rebuild trust. The failure of the financial system in Iceland in 2008 was catastrophic. The failure was systemic and, from a public policy perspective, was a story of financial integrity with application beyond Iceland. This paper documents in a coherent manner the various mechanisms that were employed by government, its regulatory agencies, its judicial processes, and the reconstituted banks themselves to rebuild trust. This paper is supplemented by interviews as well as an analysis of the mechanisms adopted, providing key lessons for governance and public policy.

Keywords: trust; corporate governance; institutional governance; financial system; Iceland; public institutions; public policy; financial integrity; financial failure.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEA.2014.067423

International Journal of Economics and Accounting, 2014 Vol.5 No.4, pp.306 - 319

Published online: 14 Feb 2015 *

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