Can accountants save the planet?

If we are to change the planet through the accounting function then we also have to change the accountants, says Prof Jill Atkins, lead speaker at this year’s one-day conference on 21 November, at London South Bank University. The ‘Accountants will save the planet!’ conference has speakers from the FRC, Carbon Trust, The Prince’s Accounting 4 Sustainability Project, and you will discover what happened when one accountancy body spoke to Extinction Rebellion.

On top of the ‘green & social responsibility’ stream, we have a ‘tax & ethics’ stream and ‘careers’ stream, so hopefully something for everyone.

One session that will certainly leave an impression will be the one on the moral tax maze. Professor Prem Sikka and Tax Justice Network’s John Christensen will be leading the debate here.

As part of the careers sessions we will look at what employers want, and ask the question – is it a robot! Hays Accountancy & Finance will also be on hand to look at what you are worth.

There really is something for everyone and all we are asking is you cover the cost of the lunch. Anyone connected with the profession is welcome to attend.

This year’s sponsors include the ACCA, CIMA and ICAEW.

Check out the day’s programme below. To secure your place go to


DATE: Thursday 21st November

VENUE: London South Bank University Business School

3 streams

Stream 1 – Green accounting & Social Responsibility

Stream 2 – Taxes & Ethics, & a bit of sustainability thrown in

Stream 3 – Careers and You

9am Arrival & Registration

9.30am Welcome & introduction: Sarah Moore-Williams, Dean, LSBU Business School

9.35am KEY NOTE SPEAKER – Professor Jill Atkins co-author of ‘Chief Value Office: Accountants can save the planet’. She co-wrote the book with Professor Mervyn King.

Jill is chair in financial management at Sheffield University Management School. She also co-edited a book on the Business of Bees…

10.30am – Session A

1) Accounting for the planet – The future economy and your role in it.

Luke McLaughlin, Sustainability and Accounting Manger, The Prince’s Accounting 4 Sustainability Project (A4S)

James Whittingham, senior sustainability consultant at Lumious

2) The moral tax maze – evasion and avoidance – are both as bad as each other? Are accountants just enablers in the game?

Professor Prem Sikka, University of Sheffield & Emeritus Professor of Accounting at the University of Essex

John Christensen, Director & Chair of Board, Tax Justice Network

3) Personal branding & ethics

Dr Rohit Talwar, Lecturer in marketing, LSBU

Dr Grace O’Rourke, Lecturer in marketing, LSBU

11.30am Refreshment break

12pm – Session B

1) Creating a greener world – how reducing carbon and making finance & accountancy ‘greener’ makes economic sense

Thora Frost, Senior Client Manager, Carbon Trust

Philip Fitz-Gerald, FRC’s director of the Financial Reporting Lab

2) AML

OPBAS – how accountants can ensure crime doesn’t pay.

Richard Simms, MD of the AMLCC and FA Simms & Partners

Stephen Hardwick, former detective inspector with West Yorkshire CID and now the director and head of ICB’s AML directorate.

3) Your careers – what are you worth

Hays – job market now and what’s in demand…

Matthew Mcauley, manager, Hays Accountancy & Finance

Niall Perridge, managers Non-Qualified Finance, Hays Accountancy & Finance

1pm Lunch

2pm – Session C

1) What about the animals? – who will be extinct first bees or accountants?

Professor Jill Atkins, Chair in Financial Management at Sheffield University Management School

Francesca Sharp, sustainability manager, ICAEW

2) Making tax fair and sustainable accounting

George Bull, Senior Tax Partner, RSM

Professor Richard Murphy, Professor of Practice in International Political Economy, City University of London

3) What employers want, and is it a robot!

A Panel discussion

Mike Day, Director, UK Education, Xero

Jonathan Runghen, Acute Finance Lead, Enfield CGC, North East London, NHS

Nav Gudra, Senior HR advisor, National Audit Office

3pm Refreshment break

3.30pm Panel discussion – “What can we do to save the planet”

Professor Ken de Silva, Emeritus Professor in Accounting, Finance & Governance, LSBU

Shaun Robertson, director of education at the ICAEW

Professor Prem Sikka, University of Sheffield & Emeritus Professor of Accounting at the University of Essex

Dr Gian Paolo Ansaloni, Associate Lecturer, LSBU

4.30pm Closing remarks & evaluation

4.45pm Networking & drinks

6pm Close