«The company is conducting a full internal investigation». This public statement accompanies virtually every modern corporate affair reported in the news media. The awareness of Swiss corporations and their senior management of the importance of internal investigations has strongly increased over the past few years. Civil, criminal, regulatory and reputational exposure regularly triggers senior management’s duty to investigate and to assess potential misconduct within the firm. The WG Investigations, co-chaired by Daniel Lucien Bühr and Daniel S. Weber, serves as a platform for discussion and exchange of ideas and aims to bring together practitioners involved in internal and regulatory investigations.
The WG is open to ECS members as well as other interested parties, such as ethics & compliance officers, investigation specialists, private practice lawyers specializing in investigations, regulators, prosecutors, forensic accountants, consultants, risk managers, auditors, eDiscovery counsel, etc. The WG organizes regular meetings, presentations and conference calls to promote the exchange of know-how and experience, the discussion of important developments and key topics and to further networking among all those who share an interest in internal and regulatory investigations. In particular, case studies will be presented to discuss trigger events, governance, life cycle as well as project set-ups of investigations. This includes related legal (e.g., legal privilege, data privacy) and non-legal issues (e.g., interviewing skills, crisis management and communication).
The WG Investigations was officially launched at a kick-off event on 7 June 2018, 17:30 in Zurich (Speaker: Dr. Claudia Fritsche; Topic: Conducting Internal Investigations in 2018 – Key Topics and Pitfalls). Claudia Fritsche’s introduction on internal investigations in 2018 provided the audience insights into key features, topics and pitfalls.
The second meeting of the Working Group was held at the Zurich offices of AlixPartners in September 2018: Carina Nilles demonstrated live how to leverage digital investigations for better results using cutting-edge investigations tools.
The third meeting took place in October 2018: Leo Hattenbach and Daniel S. Weber discussed how to conduct top-quality investigation interviews including skills, strategies and techniques. For 2019, the Working Group is preparing events in connection with crisis communication/management and investigation project management/governance. Also, we will interview a prosecutor to have insights on internal investigations in a criminal context.