Does Disclosure Work?

web 6FAIR Canada and Rotman School of Management’s Capital Markets Institute hosted a successful conference on October 28, 2014 entitled “Does Disclosure Work?”.

Following a keynote address from Susan Wolburgh Jenah, subject-matter experts Christopher Nicholls , Dilip Soman, and Sunita Sah each presented formally on their area of expertise to set the context for the day’s discussion. Christopher Nicholls provided background regarding disclosure and its importance in securities regulation; Dilip Soman informed the audience about behavioural science and consumer decision-making; and Sunita Sah presented research regarding the effects of disclosing conflicts of interest.

The subject-matter experts then joined the other panelists (Mary Condon, Ian Russell, and Ed Weinstein) to discuss issues relating to the following questions:

    • Does the disclosure received by investors assist in making optimal choices?  If not, what are the barriers?
    • Do investors receive information that is helpful to their decisions?
    • Do investors pay attention to the disclosure they receive?
    • Do investors understand the disclosure they receive?
    • How do investors interpret the disclosure they receive?
    • Does the traditional disclosure model ensure adequate investor protection?
    • What behavioral effects impede or enhance investor decisions?
    • Academic research has identified some contradictory and unintended consequences of certain aspects of required disclosure such as conflict of interest disclosure.  What is the best way to correct these failures?
    • What regulatory (or other) response could address the issues raised?

Following the panel discussion, members of the audience were invited to pose questions to the panel.


We encourage interested individuals who were unable to attend the conference to watch the full four-hour conference (unedited) at your convenience. The presenters’ slides appear in the video to the right of the speaker.

The conference drew media attention including:

Speakers (in order of appearance):
Susan Wolburgh Jenah, Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada
Christopher Nicholls, Faculty of Law, Western University
Dilip Soman, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto
Sunita Sah, Georgetown University, Research Fellow, Ethics Center of Harvard University
Mary Condon, Osgoode Hall Law School and Ontario Securities Commission
Ian Russell, Investment Industry Association of Canada
Ed Weinstein, Brondesbury Group

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November 05, 2014