An ESG Training Program Designed by and for Board Members, Executives, Investors and Advisors.

Learn from 100+ global leaders on strategic topics including:

  • ESG
  • Climate
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion
  • Human Rights
  • Supply Chain
  • SDGs
  • Anti-Corruption

  • Responsible Data Use/Cybersecurity
  • Tax
  • Investment
  • Pay
  • Engagement
  • Disclosure
  • Good Corporate Governance
  • and more...

Join board members, executives, investors and experts online for 12 bi-weekly 90-minute sessions.

Receive a comprehensive set of interview videos and resources per topic. 

Gain the trust of shareholders and stakeholders by obtaining a Global ESG Competent Boards Designation (GCB.D).

What you’ll get from this Program

  • Enrich your understanding of the critical components of good ESG performance, and enhance important competencies essential to be an effective, insightful Board Director.

  • Learn how to better respond to new enterprise risk, business complexity, technological disruptions, and social and environmental obligations.

  • Get equipped to effectively participate in discussions around the fast-evolving international ESG landscape.

  • Learn to ask the right questions and approach sustainability discussions more effectively.

  • Leverage the experience of world leading experts at the forefront of international ESG best practices, and learn how these issues play out at a broader strategic level.

  • Get valuable tools and resources to help boards and corporate stakeholders fully understand and execute on their fiduciary obligation related to climate change.

  • Get up to speed on global trends and developments, and what’s likely to gain greater relevance going forward.

  • Have greater visibility into what other leading companies are doing and why.

  • Prepare yourself for future board positions and what’s needed to be a
    future-fit leader.

This course is an excellent complement to more traditional executive training focused on business management and fiduciary duties.

Program Streams

The content in both programs is identical, though on occasion speakers may change.

The program is divided into two cohorts: one for Board Members, and one for Senior Business Professionals.

Board Members - primarily discuss the topics through the lens of serving on the board. You must be serving on at least one board with fiduciary responsibility to enter this program.

Senior Business Professionals/Investors - discuss the topics through a wide range of executive perspectives and comprise senior-level executives, investors, board advisors and those who aspire to become board members.

Alumni from both groups earn their Global ESG Competent Boards Designation (GCB.D).

Can’t determine which group you should join? Competent Boards will help you make the most appropriate choice.

Strategic Session Topics:

1. New Risks and Expectations for Boards, Executives, and Investors in Light of COVID-19

  • - How megatrends, geopolitical and environmental concerns and human values are changing expectations of businesses.
  • - How new business models are creating a purpose-driven and regenerative approach to doing business in the 21st century.

2. Dealing with Dilemmas and Turning Risks into Opportunities After the Pandemic

  • - How to plan for major disruptions to ensure resiliency and business continuity, balancing short-term and long-term goals, objectives, and accountability.

3. SDGs Competent Boards

  • - How companies and investors are embracing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and using them as a strategic tool to assess risks and innovative opportunities.

4. Climate Competent Boards

  • - How climate change is impacting society, supply chains, and business models.
  • - Strategies to fulfill growing expectations, investor driven reporting initiatives and regulatory demands.

5. ESG Competent Boards

  • - How to anticipate and respond to the growing demands for ESG disclosure and how to ensure effective identification and integration of emerging risks into ERM-frameworks.

6. Environmental Issues and Human Rights in the Supply Chain

  • - How to evaluate human rights, environmental impact and supply chain goals, targets and strategies.
  • - Includes identifying, assessing, and managing risks related to child labour, modern slavery, along with climate and social disasters.

7. Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in the Boardroom

  • - Expectations from investors and society to foster a pipeline of diverse talent.
  • - Proactively address employee misconduct and workplace culture issues (taking into account the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement and the imperatives of diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace).

8. Anti-Corruption, Integrity and Transparency

  • - Changing risks and expectations associated with anti-corruption and ethical business practices.
  • - Developing and testing the hallmarks of an effective anti-corruption compliance program, including steps companies can take to reduce fraud and corruption.

9. Responsible Use of Data, Cybersecurity and Digital Competencies

  • - Ethical considerations of the use of data including big data and AI generated opportunities.
  • - Includes exploration of data collection, stakeholder privacy concerns, and the ethical management of confidential information and disaster containment.

10. Tax, Investment and Pay in an ESG-focused world

  • - How to question the socioeconomic impact of potential business decisions, and the impact on the business’ reputation and longevity.
  • - What information is needed to make well-informed tax planning, executive pay, and capital investment and capital expenditure (CapEx) decisions.

11. Shareholder and Stakeholder Engagement and Disclosure

  • - Determining the material issues to manage and communicate to shareholders and stakeholders, including engagement strategies and trends in reporting.

12. The Future of Good Corporate Governance

  • - What does the future of good governance look like? What is the role of the board in 1 – 5 – 10 years? What is the fiduciary duty?

Program Details


In order to allow for discussions among peers, we offer two separate interactive online programs, with maximum 36 people per session.

Sessions from September 14 to October 27, 2021 start at:
6:30AM PDT (UTC-7) | 9:30AM EDT (UTC-4) | 15:30H CEST (UTC+2) | 19:00H IST (UTC+5:30) | 20:30H ICT (UTC+7)

Sessions from November 9, 2021 to March 2, 2022 start at:
6:30AM PST (UTC-8) | 9:30AM EST (UTC-5) | 15:30H CET (UTC+1) | 20:00H IST (UTC+5:30) | 21:30H ICT (UTC+7)

(September - March)
(October - March)
New Risks and Expectations for Boards, Executives, and Investors September 14, 2021 September 15, 2021
October 14, 2021
Dealing with Dilemmas and Turning Risks into Opportunities After the Pandemic September 28, 2021 September 29, 2021 October 28, 2021
SDGs Competent Boards October 12, 2021
October 13, 2021 November 11, 2021
Climate Competent Boards October 26, 2021 October 27, 2021 November 25, 2021
ESG Competent Boards November 9, 2021
November 10, 2021 December 9, 2021
Human Rights and Environmental Issues in the Supply Chain November 23, 2021
November 24, 2021 January 6, 2022
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in the Boardroom and Beyond December 7, 2021
December 8, 2021 January 20, 2022
Anti-Corruption, Integrity and Transparency January 4, 2022
January 5, 2022 February 3, 2022
Responsible Use of Data, Cybersecurity and Digital Competencies January 18, 2022
January 19, 2022 February 17, 2022
Tax, Investment, and Pay in an ESG-focused world February 1, 2022
February 2, 2022 March 3, 2022
Shareholder and Stakeholder Engagement and Disclosure February 15, 2022
February 16, 2022 March 17, 2022
The Future of Good Corporate Governance March 1, 2022
March 2, 2022 March 31, 2022

* Attendees from all time zones are welcome. Email us at if this schedule is not feasible for you.

The ESG Competent Boards Certificate Program September cohorts are now sold out.  Seats remain for the October cohort for Board Members, and both February cohorts. Seats are available in our Climate Competent Boards Certificate Program for Business Professionals and Board Members starting on September 14 and 15 respectively. Visit our webpage to register.

Session Format

  • 12 sessions at 90 minutes each, plus approximately 90-120 minutes of preparation time/materials per session (videos, case studies, targeted discussion questions and recommended reading lists).
  • Each session will require a total investment of approximately 180 minutes.
  • Program registration is capped at 36 participants to ensure a rich opportunity for dialogue.
  • A Self-Study option is also available to learn on your own schedule.

Session Materials

  • Concise videos/podcasts featuring interviews with global leaders and in-depth fireside chats.
  • A list of questions to help you evaluate whether your approaches appropriately consider changing risks and opportunities.
  • Case studies to be discussed with peers during the session.
  • Recommended readings, reports, tools, and frameworks.
  • Bios and headshots of the global dialogue session attendees.

Session Agendas

  • Discussion of preparation material provided. 
  • Discussion of the session topic with global faculty members. 
  • Brief presentation of the session case study. 
  • Breakout session with approx. 6 people per group (groups change bi-weekly).
  • Question and discussion period. 
  • All sessions are held under Chatham House Rule.

Requirements to Complete Program

To complete the interactive program and receive your Certificate and GCB.D Designation, you are required to participate in a minimum of 8 of the 12 interactive sessions. 

If you miss a session, you'll have an opportunity to review the session recording (to a maximum of four). After completing the sessions, you'll be required to successfully pass an examination based on a final case study.

Join Our Alumni

Upon completion, alumni can continue to network with other alumni in our Competent Boards Alumni LinkedIn groups. Alumni can also choose to join our Alumni Membership Program.


Canadian sales tax applies only if you reside in Canada.

One-time Payment of Full Program

$4495 USD

6-month installment plan

$775 USD

per month for 6 months (includes a 3.5% admin fee)

12-month installment plan

$393 USD

per month for 12 months (includes a 5% admin fee)


If accepted into the program, you will be provided one week to complete the registration fee (unless agreed otherwise) to confirm your seat in the program. Our programs fill quickly, so please apply as early as possible.

Due to an influx in registrations, we have introduced a brief application process to ensure all cohorts include a diverse group of industries and countries.

Please note - We require those in the Board Members program to serve on a board with fiduciary responsibility. We require those in the program for Senior Business Professionals to have experience as an executive, investor, board advisor, or other type of senior business professional. 

Please view the FAQ Page or email with any questions.

Self-Study Option

For those unable to commit to the interactive program schedule, we offer a Self-Study version to complete on your own time. The content is the same as the full Designation program, however there is no live interactive component with experts and international peers.

For the Self-Study program, graduates earn a Certificate of Completion, but not the full GCB.D Designation.

What is included in the Self-Study Program?

  • 12 concise collections of videos, in-depth fireside chats, and related tools featuring interviews with 100+ renowned global leaders on current, pressing board issues.
  • Sets of questions to evaluate whether your current approaches appropriately consider changing risks and opportunities.
  • Recommended readings, reports, tools, and frameworks.
  • Final written and oral test – choose 1 of 7 industry cases to analyze and discuss.
  • The content is available on our online learning platform 24/7 so you can complete the program at your own pace over a 6-month period.
  • A Competent Boards Self-Study Program Certificate is granted upon successful completion.

What is required to obtain the Self-Study Program Certificate?

Completion of modules within 6 months and successfully completing the final case assignment.

Self-Study Program Pricing

Canadian sales tax applies only if you reside in Canada.
Register for the Self-Study Program and Receive Automatic Access to the Content.

Full Program

$2995 USD

Individual Sessions

$299 USD

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