Purpose – The aim of this paper is to document the author's keynote address in Accounting at the 16th Annual Conference on Pacific Basin Finance, Economics, Accounting and Management “Innovation for a Sustainable Future: Visions for 2020”, July 3-4, 2008, Brisbane, Australia. Design/methodology/approach – In keeping with the theme of the Conference, the paper considers two areas – global accounting and financial reporting, and regulation and institutions. Findings – As business has become more global and financial markets have developed world-wide, comparable accounting and financial information across countries and companies is a logical step to continue to support and advance business. With this shift, though, the world moves towards a monopoly in accounting standards and standard setting. Practical implications – The potential costs, problems, and possible solutions need to be considered. Current regulatory environments and institutions offer limited ability to effectively monitor such a monopoly. So innovation must occur. Originality/value – The paper shows that an infrastructure to support global investor protection and convergence of investor protections and rights can offer such innovation to support and sustain global business.