Winners of Sirca research prize at the 24th Australasian Banking & Finance Conference

Sirca has been a long term supporter of the Australasian Finance and Banking Conference, organised by the Institute of Global Finance and School of Banking & Finance at the Australian School of Business at UNSW. For many years we have sponsored the Sirca research prize which recognises the best paper to have made use of Sirca data.

We have two sets of winners for the 2011 prize:

Serkan Honeine and Peter L. Swan, “What are the Determinants of Board Performance: Skin in the Game, Composition, Diversity Size?” (see


Chris Single and Russell Poskitt, “Why is US dollar bond funding for international banks more expensive?” (see

Congratulations to the winners and many thanks to the 26 other contenders.

Gail Pemberton appointed as new Sirca Chairman

Reflecting Sirca’s mandate to develop and provide relevant global data and advanced tools to promote and enable financial research and innovation for universities, the Sirca Board comprises a representative mix of senior academic and financial sector professionals (see who is on the Sirca Board at Two-thirds of the Sirca Board are elected by Member universities and one-third are independent Directors elected by the Board. The Board’s role is to oversee the governance and strategic direction of the company in order to ensure that the research interests of Member universities are met.

Gail Pemberton has been elected as the new Chairman of the Sirca Board. Gail’s appointment follows the stepping down of Sirca’s long-standing previous Chairman, John Masters. John will remain as a Director of the company.

Gail has been an independent Director of Sirca for several years, and has an impressive record of achievement in the finance/technology sector including group CIO and then COO for Macquarie Bank, and CEO of BNP Paribas Securities Services in Australia and New Zealand. Gail won a Centenary Medal for outstanding services to Australian business and currently holds various Board positions including Chairman of OneVue and Director of UXC, Baycorp, and the recently listed As Chairman of Sirca, Gail’s close ties with the financial and technology sector will greatly assist Sirca achieve its ambitious agenda to provide world-class research support to the academic community, as well as to the regulatory and commercial sectors.

Sirca Corporate Governance database

Sirca has been tasked by UTS to manage the ongoing maintenance and development of their Australian corporate governance database (previously known as the “Henry” database). This initiative was started in the late 1990’s and records a wide range of variables for Australian listed companies, including company details, subsidiaries, shareholdings, auditors, directors (independence, remuneration, and committee membership), as well as compensation details including share option and bonus arrangements.

Sirca’s objectives are to make the database available via a flexible and simple user interface, and to work with our membership in order to cooperatively broaden the array of corporate governance attributes available via the database, such that it can become an even more valuable resource for the purposes of research into Australia and NZ company affairs. This database is expected to be formally released in early 2012.

This initiative is a great example of how Sirca can work with member universities to ensure that databases, previously managed and maintained by individual institutions, or small groups of academics, can be leveraged as a resource available to all Sirca members, whilst benfitting from Sirca’s software and data curation expertise.

The value of the Corporate Governance database is evidenced by the work of UTS staff and PhD students over the past years that has referenced the database, including:

Loyeung, A, Z. Matolcsy and P. Wells, 2011, The association between CFO talent and compensation – at CAR

Loyeung, A, J. Weber, Z. Matolcsy and P. Wells, 2011, An analysis of the accounting errors that arise during the transition to IFRS – at JAE

Christy, J, Z. Matolcsy, A. Wright and A. Wyatt, 2011, The association between board characteristics and stock returns for large and small firms – at Abacus

Brown, P, Z. Matolcsy and P. Wells, 2011, Group versus individual compensation schemes for senior executives and firm performance – at CAR

Vanza, S., P. Wells and A. Wright, 2011, Asset impairment and the disclosure of private information – at JBFA – revise and resubmit

Matolcsy, Z. J. Tyler and P. Wells, 2011, The impact of quasi-regulatory reform on boards and their committees during the period 2001-2007, Australian Accounting Review, forthcoming

Matolcsy, Z. J. Tyler and P. Wells, 2011, Is continuous disclosure associated with board independence, Australian Journal of Management, forthcoming

Matolcsy, Z.P. & Wright, A. 2011, ‘CEO compensation structure and firm performance’, Accounting & Finance, vol. 51, no. 3, pp. 745-763

Bugeja, M. 2011, ‘Foreign takeovers of Australian listed entities’, Australian Journal of Management, vol. 36, no. 1, pp. 89-107

Matolcsy, Z.P., Riddell, S.J. & Wright, A. 2009, ‘Alternative explanations for the association between market values and stock-based compensation expenditure’, Journal of Contemporary Accounting and Economics, vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 95-107

Lim, S., Matolcsy, Z.P. & Chow, D. 2007, ‘The Association Between Board Composition And Different Types Of Voluntary Disclosure’, European Accounting Review, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 555-583

Matolcsy, Z.P. & Wright, A. 2007, ‘Australian CEO compensation: The descriptive evidence’, Australian Accounting Review, vol. 17, no. 3, pp. 47-59

Matolcsy, Z.P. & Wright, A. 2006, ‘Are we paying our CEOs too much?’, JASSA, vol. Summer, no. 4, pp. 27-31

Linden, P. & Matolcsy, Z.P. 2004, ‘Corporate governance scoring systems: what do they tell us?’, Australian Accounting Review, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 9-16

Matolcsy, Z.P., Stokes, D. & Wright, A. 2004, ‘Do independent directors add value?’, Australian accounting Review, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 33-40

Please contact us if you would like additional information about the Corporate Governance database, or if you would like to talk to Sirca about how we can help with similar projects which you, or your university are pursuing.