Director of Assurance and XBRL Architecture
Mr. Cohen is an accounting technology futurist, one of the original founders of XBRL and a pioneer in accounting and audit technology and related assurance methodologies. A writer, teacher and trainer, he has taught accountants, academics, regulators, software developers and business people about the Internet, XBRL, standardized business reporting, audit data standards and electronic distributed ledgers, security and authentication, analytics, GRC and continuous auditing. He has published hundreds of articles and columns for the business and academic press, and written or contributed to numerous books, including primary authorship of Accountant’s Guide to the Internet, the first book about the relevance of the Internet to the accounting profession. An experienced global collaborator and standards developer, he works with a global network of specialists and academics in standards development relevant to the accounting and audit process. Mr. Cohen worked for PwC from May 2000 to June 2017, and served as its XBRL Global Technical Leader, supporting standards awareness, strategy, training and technical support. He represented the Firm to the AICPA’s numerous committees focusing on the emergence of analytics in audit processes, and contributed to numerous internal assurance technology-related projects. Both before and after his time at PwC, he has been the Chief Unicorn Wrangler for Cohen Computer Consulting, an accounting software consultancy focused on helping growing businesses cope with, and benefit from, information technology. Mr. Cohen is one of XBRL’s “forefathers”, working with his co-founders to encourage the AICPA to begin the effort now known as XBRL. XBRL’s initial focus was on US GAAP Financial Reporting; Mr. Cohen is responsible for the broader data view of XBRL; he is originator and chief architect of XBRL’s Global Ledger Taxonomy Framework (XBRL GL), used for detailed reporting in Brazil, Finland, Japan and Turkey. Mr. Cohen has served the international and jurisdictional XBRL organizations as chair of XBRL US and numerous working groups, as well as serving as a trainer, teacher and speaker for XII and XBRL US. The primary technical editor of the XBRL International Certification course, he also helped write the AICPA/XBRL US Certification course and served on the US Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB) Taxonomy Advisory Group. As an ambassador of XBRL, Mr. Cohen has collaborated with virtually every organization developing detailed accounting and audit standardized representations, including UN/CEFACT, for which Mr. Cohen is one of two recognized global domain coordinators in accounting and auditing standardization, the OECD, developers of the SAF-T (Standard Audit File – Taxation), and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), developers of the AICPA Audit Data Standards. He is active in the International Organization for Standardization ISO/PC 295 Audit Data Collection standards development as chair of the US mirror committee and a designated Expert to the global working group. He also sits on the Canadian mirror to the ISO/TC 307 Blockchain and Electronic Distributed Ledger Technologies effort, serves as a designated Expert to many of its work and study groups. and has been selected as Convenor of ISO/TC 307’s Interoperability Study Group. Mr. Cohen has collaborated with the standards community in developing broad XML-based security standards to encourage the secure and authentic flow of standardized data and is a named contributor to the World Wide Web Consortium’s XML Encryption Recommendation. He has also worked with the Open Compliance and Ethics Group (OCEG) to develop standards for risk and controls (GRC). As a member of OASIS TaxXML, Mr. Cohen collaborated with the Netherlands and Australia as a co-developer of the concept of Standard Business Reporting. Mr. Cohen also actively collaborates with the academic community as a guest lecturer and in joint research, and received the 2012 Best Reviewer Award from the AAA Journal of Information Systems. He has been an adjunct professor of accounting at the Rochester Institute of Technology and designed and coordinated the XBRL International Academic Competition with Bryant University for more than a decade. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants (NYSSCPA).