With executive compensation the focus of much attention lately, shareholder activists and government regulators – particularly in the United States – are rethinking corporate management doctrines developed two centuries ago, says Vern Krishna, Tax Counsel, Mediator and Arbitrator in the Ottawa office of Borden Ladner Gervais LLP.

'Say on pay ,' says Krishna, 'may be slow in coming, but has the potential to radically shift the principles of corporate governance in North America . Corporations are under increasing pressure to allow shareholders some input into the amount, form and disclosure of executive compensation.'

And Canadian banks have set an early example of this, passing resolutions that shareholders should be allowed non-binding votes on executive compensation. The banks consented to the requests in light of looming shareholder revolts on corporate compensation.