This is a book about shareholders - who they are, what they own, how their composition and character has changed, and with it their relationship with the companies they own. It is also a book about shareholder rights and responsibilities. In a clear and readable style the book explores the key current corporate governance issues - company law and reporting, chief executive pay, regulatory and accountability requirements - against the background of an ever-changing business environment: an environment in which private investors may have grown in number, but in which shareholders influence has dwindled as institutions have become the dominant shareholding group. Throughout the book the authors provide numerous examples and anecdotes illustrating the evolution of the joint stock company from the South Sea Company of the 18th century to the giants and cause celebres on the corporate stage in the 1980s and 1990s. Both authors are authoritative and informed commentators on issues of corporate governance with extensive management, policy and advocacy experience; their underlying concern is to show the importance of shareholder interest and involvement, which they strongly believe will remain in the best interests of the company and the wider society in the 21st century.