Whistleblowing Report 2017 – Practice in the Swiss private sector

Zurich, November 21, 2017. ECS members and guests attended the presentation of the new Whistleblowing Report 2018 in Zurich. Dr. Christian Hauser from HTW Chur – the University of Applied Sciences – presented the results from the first scientific study on whistleblowing in the Swiss private sector. Among other interesting results, the study shows that around 70% of companies with over 249 employees have a whistleblowing process in place, that over 50% of all whistleblowing reports received are classified as relevant and only 3% are classified as malicious. In the second presentation, Zacharias Huwyler from Integrity Line GmbH provided some interpretations and recommendations based on the new results. For example, it can be observed that quality and quantity of reports increase if the whistleblowing channels are opened for third parties such as suppliers or clients. The interpretation of this is, that information about certain types of misconduct may almost exclusively be present outside the affected company. Therefore, it is recommendable to open whistleblowing channels also for third parties. The event closed with a networking apéro.

The study can be downloaded online: www.whistleblowingreport.ch

WG Anti-bribery meeting, 7 December 2017, Basel

The Anti-bribery Working Group will hold a meeting on 7 December 2017 at the Basel Institute’s offices at 60 Steinenring Basel starting at 5pm. There will be a  look-back review of legal and regulatory developments in 2017 and a discussion on likely future trends in 2018. We would like to use this opportunity to establish the WG as a regular meeting, we would appreciate hearing from the members as regards the compliance ABC issues that would be of interest and relevance to your daily work. Everyone is therefore welcome to come and contribute to the discussions, and we look forward to your participation. Please send an email to register your attendance to info@ethics-compliance.ch

New ECS Working Group Return on Compliance, 19 January 2018

Join our new ECS Working that will address the question which continues to elude the compliance community after many years: can one quantify the benefits of compliance? And if so, how best? The goal is to go beyond measuring the costs of non-compliance and probe into measuring the return of the investment on compliance. This Working Group will seek to deliver evidence of such return.

The Group will be hold its first meeting
19 January 2018, 14:00 to 16:00, BDO Office, Zurich, Schiffbaustrasse 2.

If you are interested in joining the group, send your name to info@ethics-compliance.ch , copying in philipp.luettmann@bdo.ch.

ECS Working Group event: Independent Audit and Certification of CMS in Switzerland, 24 August 2017

Thursday, 24 August 2017, 5:00pm, at LALIVE, Stampfenbachplatz 4, Zurich

Working Group Co-Chairs Dominique Casutt and Daniel Bühr will open the round table event by sharing their general experience from Compliance Management System audits (both are accredited CMS auditors). Then, Matthias Kiener, Partner, Advisory Forensic with KPMG, Zurich, will introduce us to CMS audits under IDW Audit Standard 980. The presentation will be followed by a discussion (under Chatham House rules).

All those interested in independent CMS audits and certification, trends in Switzerland and internationally, the growing importance of standards, the effects of certification requirements on suppliers etc. are very welcome to join this event. Please register by sending an email to info@ethics-compliance.ch. The discussion will be followed by an apéro at 6:00pm.

When Swiss companies are in foreign hands: what challenges for the compliance officer? 1 September 2017

September 1, 16:00, Mühlebachstrasse 23/25, Seefeld, Zurich

Roundtable Discussion sponsored by the ECS Working Group on Leadership. This third annual event will be followed by end-of-summer networking drinks in a nearby locale.

This year the focus is on the challenges on compliance leadership when a Swiss company is in foreign hands. Several participants whose companies are owned by Chinese, American, and other foreign companies or shareholders will be on hand. As in the past, the discussion will be moderated and participatory where all attending can also share their own thoughts on the subject.

After the roundtable, the discussions will continue over a drink, courtesy of ECS.

There is no cost for attending but places are limited.   If you wish to reserve a place, send an email to info@ethics-compliance.ch with your name, title, and company.

Swiss Mirror-Committee for the International Organization for Standardization/ISO Technical Committee 309 – Governance of Organisations, 14 September 2017

On 14 September 2017, 9:00 – 11:00 am, the Swiss Association for Standardisation (SNV), will inform on the forthcoming establishment of the Swiss Mirror Committee to the ISO Technical Committee 309 which covers the areas Corporate Governance, Compliance management systems (including Anti-bribery management systems) and whistleblowing. SNV has actively been involved in the establishment of the relevant ISO Standards (19600 – Compliance manangement systems and 37001 – Anti-bribery management systems) and will now establish a new SNV committee that will represent SNV in the ISO working groups and introduce the Swiss position in the relevant standardization projects. Please see the attached invitation to the event that will be conducted in German and French.

Flyer SNV September 2017

EU GDPR – Is your whistleblowing system affected? 21 September, Zurich

21 September 2017, 17.30-19.00, Lagerstrasse 5 – room number LAD 112, 8004 Zurich (5min from HB)

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) intends to consolidate and strengthen the rules around the collection, processing and use of data across the EU and will apply from May 2018. The ECS Working Group on Whistleblowing aims to shed light on the implications of the GDPR for web based whistleblowing systems. After a key note of a leading specialist on data protection laws and compliance, following questions will be discussed:

  • Are adaptions of the current setup needed?
  • How can privacy by design be applied?
  • What to do with data of accused persons?

Stay after the discussion for networking over drinks and snacks offered by the ECS Working Group on Whistleblowing.

There is no cost for attending but places are limited. If you wish to reserve a place, send an email to info@ethics-compliance.ch with your name, title, and company.

ICCSRGSD 2017 : 19th International Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility, Governance and Sustainable Development

Zurich, 29-30 July 2017

The Conference aims to bring together leading academic scientists, researchers and research scholars to exchange and share their experiences and research results on all aspects of Corporate Social Responsibility, Governance and Sustainable Development. It also provides a premier interdisciplinary platform for researchers, practitioners and educators to present and discuss the most recent innovations, trends, and concerns as well as practical challenges encountered and solutions adopted in the fields of Corporate Social Responsibility, Governance and Sustainable Development.


ECS Annual Meeting and Compliance Insight Event – 4 May 2017, 4-6 pm, Berne

The annual meeting of members of Ethics and Compliance Switzerland/ECS was held on 4 May 2017 in Berne in the guild house of Gesellschaft zu Pfistern where ECS was established in May 2014. 19 members attended the annual meeting and approved the annual report, the annual accounts and the budget for 2017. The members granted discharge and re-elected the Board for a second term. They also agreed with the Board’s plan to elect new Board members in the coming years on a rolling basis.

The meeting of members was followed by a presentation by Mr Michel Huissoud, the Director of the Federal Audit Office. Mr Huissoud presented the Office and presented the work the Office performs and the challenges it encounters in its audits. The presentation was followed by an open discussion on recent audits performed by the Office and instances of resistence by state owned enterprises and government agencies. The meeting was followed by a networking apéro which provided the participants with an excellent opportunity to discuss current compliance trends at a wonderful historic place.


Anti-Corruption Practitioners‘ Circle, 17 March 2017, Bern

The working group exists since 2012 as an informal and confidential exchange between compliance executives and anti-corruption practitioners. TI Switzerland offers corporate compliance executives the possibility to discuss concrete problems and challenges in preventing and fighting corruption. The meetings are held under the Chatham House Rule.

Participation fee
Members of TI or Ethics and Compliance: free
Non Members: CHF 100.-

Online before 10th March 2017



DACH-Compliance Conference 2017

Building Competences. Crossing Borders.

ECS board members Claudia Seitz and Arndt Harbecke will speak at the DACH-Compliance Conference on 17 February 2017, 10:00 – 17:00h

Venue: ZHAW School of Management and Law Aula, Gebäude SW, (Volkartgebäude) St.-Georgen-Platz 2, 8400 Winterthur

ECS members benefit from a 20% discount.

Programme and online registration 

AIBL Luncheon-presentation, February 24, 2017, Geneva

The Association of International Business Lawyers invites to a luncheon-presentation:

Internal investigations in case of fraud or corruption: why and how?
Friday, February 24, 2017, 12:00 p.m. at the Hôtel Métropole Geneva

Jean-Pierre Méan is an experienced multilingual lawyer in the field of international business at the crossroads of law and all levels of management with a particular expertise in the area of compliance and anti-corruption measures. He implemented codes of conduct and integrity programs in several international corporations and in an international financial institution.

Maximilien Roche is Senior Manager, Anti-Fraud Unit and Corporate Audit with ST Microelectronics.

Registration: info@aibl.ch


Anti Corruption Switzerland, 28 February – 1 March 2017, Zurich

For the first time C5, in partnership with the Basel Institute on Governance, are bringing together the anti-corruption and compliance community throughout Switzerland.

This two-day conference has been developed through in-depth research with leaders in anti-corruption, compliance and risk management. Designed to provide all attendees with the best platform for networking and sharing experiences of cutting-edge risk mitigation strategies in compliance.

Programme and registration

Seminar on Business & Human Rights on 17 November 2016

The Human Rights Commission of the Geneva Bar Association invites you to aseminar on „Business & Human Rights“ on 17 November 2016 at the University of Geneva. A copy of the program is attached.

Addressed to lawyers, in-house counsel, companies and banks, this seminar will present the UN Guiding Principles on Business & Human Rights and their practical implications for economic actors and their legal counsels. Through specific workshops, this seminar will examine the duties and obligations of lawyers, corporations and banks in the context of this issue of increasing practical importance.

The seminar is organised in collaboration with the Faculty of Law of the University of Geneva and the International Bar Association and will be held in English. Registration will be open until 21 October 2016 (see attached registration form). The number of place is limited.

For additional information, please contact Sylvain Savolainen at ssavolainen@lalive.ch.

ECS Year-of-End Event on International Investigations and Mutual Legal Assistance (Zurich, 24 November 2016, 4:00pm)

ECS Members Discuss Legal Assistance and Cooperation Among Authorities at End of Year Event

The ECS concluded a busy year with a roundtable discussion on November 24 in Zurich featuring Annemarie Nussbaumer, Head of International Legal Assistance at FINMA, and ECS’ Chairman Paolo Bernasconi.

Touching on all aspects of legal assistance and cooperation among authorities, the discussion highlighted the importance of this subject for compliance professionals, including in the context of investigations, issues involving corporate liability, tax, and other matters. The event also reflected the benefit of thinking about compliance across sectors and having the public and private sectors dialog on critical topics.

The event was topped off by an apéro to celebrate the end of the year and to further exchange ideas.



Seminar on Anti-Bribery Management Systems, 10 November 2016, Bern

ECS is sponsoring a seminar on 10 November 2016 on ‘Risk-based Compliance and Anti-Bribery Management Systems’. The seminar, organized by the Swiss Association for Standardization (SNV), focuses on the implementation of the new ISO standards 19600 and 37001. ECS members benefit from a special registration fee of CHF 420.00 (instead of CHF 520.00). ECS members with an interest in anti-bribery management systems are cordially invited to attend the seminar. For registration, please use the following link and mention that you are a member of ECS. Programme

International Bar Association: The Panama Papers are a tipping point for reform

The record leak of 11.5 million documents sheds unprecedented light on the workings of the world’s financial centres. Public and political opinions have shifted markedly and the clamour to end years of obstructive secrecy are now more unequivocal than ever before.

At the Paris IBA Anti-Corruption Conference on 15- 16 June 2016, IBA president David Rivkin noted that lawyers play a vital role in investigating, prosecuting and bringing to justice those who are engaged in corruption. ‘They are an essential part of the battle against corruption,’ he said. The IBA has undertaken considerable work in the areas of anti-corruption, combatting money laundering and, last year, launched a Judicial Integrity Initiative aimed at eliminating judicial corruption.

Link: www.ibanet.org