Thank You for a Great 2017!

Throughout 2017, IACA continued to empower anti-corruption and compliance professionals around the world, and in March it celebrated its sixth anniversary as an international organization.

 IACA’s senior management and staff would like to express sincere thanks to all the individuals and institutions who have supported us over the past 12 months: our constituency members, our Boards, our host country Austria, the county of Lower Austria as well as the local community of Laxenburg, the United Nations, Permanent Missions and Embassies, partners, faculty, students and participants, our alumni, and numerous other friends and stakeholders.

We would also like to extend our warm gratitude to those Member States and other stakeholders who have contributed financial and human resources to support IACA’s work throughout the year.

Among IACA’s international highlights this year were the Sixth Assembly of Parties in early October in Sharm El Sheikh, Arab Republic of Egypt, and the continued expansion of our constituency, which welcomed Guinea and Lebanon during 2017 and now comprises 72 Parties.

IACA continued to forge new partnerships and reinforced long-standing ones. In February the organization concluded a Memorandum of Understanding with INTERPOL, one of our initiating partners, paving the way for closer cooperation in the global fight against corruption.

Our programmes and activities also had a dynamic and successful year.

On 7 December IACA celebrated the graduation of the third (2015 – 2017) Master in Anti-Corruption Studies (MACS) class, including professionals from 16 countries around the world. The fourth and fifth MACS classes are well underway, as is the new International Master in Anti-Corruption Compliance and Collective Action, which is specially designed for practitioners involved with the business sector.

IACA’s third Regional Summer Academy earlier this month, this time for the Middle East, attracted 55 participants from 14 countries and jurisdictions and received highly positive feedback from anti-corruption and compliance professionals across the region. IACA also developed and delivered many tailor-made training programmes, with professionals from diverse backgrounds benefiting from IACA’s expertise during 2017. As a result, our alumni network has expanded to include more than 1,500 anti-corruption and compliance professionals in 154 countries and jurisdictions.

IACA received further UN recognition for its education and capacity-building activities in the field of anti-corruption and human rights, being explicitly mentioned in a UN General Assembly Human Rights Council Resolution.

In 2017 IACA also reiterated its commitment to the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) at the Conference of the States Parties to the UNCAC, as well as its commitment to the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Thank you all once again for your engagement and support, and best wishes for a happy and successful 2018!

Third IACA Regional Summer Academy Empowers Middle East Professionals

The IACA Regional Summer Academy – Middle East came to a successful close in Kuwait City on Thursday, receiving highly positive feedback from anti-corruption and compliance professionals across the region.

Tamer Abbas from the Administrative Control Authority of the Arab Republic of Egypt appreciated how the programme “has increased our knowledge and facilitated the sharing of experiences among competent bodies in different countries. This helps us combat and defeat corruption in our countries.”

IMG 1466Judge Maysam Al-Nuweiri, General Director of the Ministry of Justice of Lebanon, added: “The issues that were discussed are of significant importance to us and they do answer many questions that are raised in my country.”

Co-organized with the Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority (NAZAHA), the five-day session attracted 55 participants from 14 countries and jurisdictions across the Middle East: Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, and the United Arab Emirates; and the State of Palestine.

It was specially designed to address regional challenges related to corruption, serve as a discussion forum for anti-corruption and compliance professionals in the Middle East, and build a platform for the establishment of regional practitioner networks. Prominent themes included good governance, public procurement, natural resources, asset recovery, and the links between culture and corruption.

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Participants significantly contributed to the success of the training by actively engaging with their peers and with a diversified pool of expert lecturers from the region and beyond.

The latter included, among many others, H.E. Ambassador Muhyieddeen Shaban Touq from Jordan, former Chairman of the Ad-Hoc Committee for the United Nations Convention against Corruption and a current member of IACA’s Board of Governors.

At the closing ceremony the Austrian Ambassador to Kuwait, H.E. Mr. Sigurd Pacher, expressed his gratitude to IACA for choosing Kuwait as the venue for the training. Dr. Mohammed Buzubar, Secretary General of the Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority, underlined the importance of its strategic cooperation with IACA, including possible similar initiatives in the future.

DPP 31576The participants now join the IACA Alumni association, an ever-growing global network of more than 1,500 professionals from 154 countries and jurisdictions. Following the completion of this programme IACA is pleased to welcome the first professionals from Qatar to its alumni network.

This was the third IACA Regional Summer Academy following previous sessions in Latin America (Argentina, 2015) and Eastern Africa (Uganda, 2016).

The OECD Anti-Bribery Convention at 20

IACA today marked the 20th anniversary of the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention by reaffirming its commitment to this major contribution to the global anti-corruption movement.

 The OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions was signed on 17 December 1997, and entered into force on 15 February 1999. It presently has 43 Parties, comprising all 35 OECD countries and 8 non-OECD countries.

As well as establishing legally binding standards to criminalize bribery of foreign public officials in international business transactions, the OECD Convention sets up a state-owned monitoring mechanism to ensure the thorough implementation of signatory countries’ international obligations. This monitoring is carried out by the OECD Working Group on Bribery.

Martin Kreutner, IACA’s Dean and Executive Secretary, said that over the last two decades the OECD Convention has established itself as arguably the key point of reference concerning the “supply side” of bribery.

“The OECD Anti-Bribery Convention is an increasingly important tool in our collective anti-corruption efforts, in particular with regard to the business sector. IACA today reiterates its pledge to continue supporting the implementation of the OECD Convention through its work in empowering anti-corruption and compliance professionals across the globe,” he emphasized.

Drago Kos, Chair of the OECD Working Group on Bribery and a member of IACA’s frequent visiting faculty, highlighted the continuing importance of the Convention in a statement issued on the occasion of the anniversary.

“Adherence to the OECD’s Anti-Bribery Convention is growing but we still need all major economies on board if we are ever to achieve a truly global level playing field,” he said.

IACA continues to collaborate closely with the OECD, having signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the organization in 2014.

Tailor-made Training for Kosovo Authorities

IACA delivered a tailor-made training for government officials from Kosovo this week to help them prepare to develop and implement Kosovo’s 2018 – 2022 Anti-corruption Strategy and Action Plan. This training was within the framework of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Kosovo’s “Support to Anti-corruption Efforts in Kosovo” project, which aims to support anti-corruption institutions to better develop policy, legislation and strategy.

 The three-day training at IACA’s Laxenburg campus focused on strategic planning and public procurement. It covered legal frameworks of and risks related to public procurement, conflicts of interest and transparency, and identifying fraud and corruption, and included specialized sessions on developing a national anti-corruption strategy.

Tailor-made trainings are IACA’s customized programmes for specific organizations, corporations, or institutions, addressing the unique challenges that each one faces in preventing and fighting corruption.

IACA Summer Academy 2018: Applications Open

The 2018 edition of the renowned IACA Summer Academy is now open for applications from anti-corruption and compliance professionals around the world. The programme will take place from 29 June to 6 July 2018 at IACA’s campus in Laxenburg, Austria.

 As in previous years, this eighth Summer Academy will examine trends and practices on the global anti-corruption agenda and provide participants with tools for bridging the gap between theory and practice.

According to Justine Kasoma from the Governance and Civil Society Programme at GIZ Uganda, who took part in the 2017 Summer Academy, “It was an amazing experience with many participants from around the world, diverse experiences and professors sharing very useful knowledge. The opportunities this IACA programme provided for networking and partnering on the anti-corruption agenda cannot be overlooked.”

Since its debut in 2011, the interdisciplinary programme has attracted almost 500 professionals from more than 110 countries.

Delivered by leading international academics and practitioners in the field of anti-corruption and compliance, the Summer Academy is a unique milieu for learning, incorporating lectures, a roundtable discussion, and other interactive activities.

“Practice meets Science” is the overall theme of the Summer Academy. The diverse professional backgrounds and cross-sectoral experience of the expert lecturers give participants an excellent opportunity to expand their knowledge and further strengthen their hands-on skills in an international environment.

Scott Davison (UK), Country Sales Manager at Hertz Equipment Rental, Middle East & North Africa, also participated in last year’s programme. “Initially, I doubted my ability to match the other candidates, but I am now driven to seek a career in compliance. You (IACA) provided me with the tools, motivation, and learning platform to see that my goal of becoming a certified compliance professional was definitely achievable,” he said.

Participants benefit from stimulating high-quality peer discussion and subsequently join IACA’s alumni network of more than 1,500 anti-corruption and compliance professionals in over 150 countries and jurisdictions.

Professionals with a minimum of five years’ relevant work experience in the public and private sectors, international and non-governmental organizations, media, civil society, and academia are encouraged to apply.

Some fee discounts and scholarships are available.

For more information and to apply, click here. The application period will close on 19 March 2018.

IACA Emphasizes International Cooperation at Astana Anti-Corruption Conference

IACA again highlighted the vital importance of effective international cooperation in fighting corruption at a conference in Astana, Kazakhstan last Friday. The one-day event on “Modern Anti-corruption Standards and International Cooperation Development” was organized by the Agency for Civil Service Affairs and Anti-Corruption of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Mr. Martin Kreutner, IACA’s Dean and Executive Secretary, delivered a video message in which he emphasized the importance of international cooperation in combating corruption, noted the national anti-corruption efforts of Kazakhstan, and stressed the crucial role of the joint effort by the international community in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

H.E. Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), also addressed the conference via video link, and senior officials from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) made further contributions to the plenary session.

IACA was represented at the event by Mr. Jaroslaw Pietrusiewicz, Senior Officer for External Relations and Protocol, who spoke about the organization’s mandate and current activities. He also took part in a panel discussion on “Trends in combating corruption at the national and international levels” a day before the official start of the conference.

IACA has close and long-standing ties with Kazakhstan, which acceded to the Agreement for the Establishment of IACA as an International Organization in December 2013.

Lebanese Ambassador Presents Credentials

On 12 December H.E. Mr. Ibrahim Assaf, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of the Lebanese Republic to the International Organizations in Vienna, presented his credentials to Mr. Martin Kreutner, Dean and Executive Secretary of IACA.

 The Lebanese Republic acceded to the Agreement for the Establishment of IACA as an International Organization in April 2017.

IACA Regional Summer Academy - Middle East Starts on International Anti-Corruption Day

On 9 December, International Anti-Corruption Day, IACA also celebrated the start of its third Regional Summer Academy training programme, this time for the Middle East. Fifty-five anti-corruption and compliance practitioners from 14 countries and jurisdictions in the region have gathered in Kuwait to participate in the session, which is organized by IACA in cooperation with the Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority (NAZAHA). 

The five-day training will address current regional and global anti-corruption trends and provide practitioners with tools to address corruption in their daily work. Good governance, corruption and culture, public procurement, asset recovery, and ethics and compliance are some of the topics covered by internationally renowned expert lecturers, including H.E. Ambassador Muhyieddeen Shaban Touq, former Chairman of the Ad-Hoc Committee for the United Nations Convention Against Corruption, Prof. Robert Klitgaard (IACA frequent visiting faculty member), Yolanda Tayler (World Bank), and many others from the region and beyond.

The IACA Regional Summer Academy – Middle East provides a platform for the exchange of experiences and ideas for professionals from Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, and the United Arab Emirates; and the State of Palestine. 

The opening ceremony of the programme was attended by H.E. Dr. Faleh Al-Azab, Minister of Justice of Kuwait, Mr. Abdulrahman Nemash Al-Nemash, Chairman of the Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority, and Mr. Martin Kreutner, IACA’s Dean and Executive Secretary.

In his opening address, Mr. Kreutner thanked the Government of Kuwait for hosting one of IACA’s flagship programmes and added that “Today, on the occasion of International Anti-Corruption Day, the region is sending a strong message to the world, and IACA is honoured to be a part of this change”. 

The first two editions of the IACA Regional Summer Academy were held in Latin America(Argentina, 2015) and Eastern Africa (Uganda, 2016).

International Senior Advisory Board Meets

IACA’s International Senior Advisory Board gathered in Laxenburg last week to discuss current initiatives at the organization and provide input on a range of matters related to future programmes and activities.

During its deliberations on 6 and 7 December, the Board received updates on recent developments at IACA, including the sixth session of the Assembly of Parties and the organization’s new Work Programme 2017 – 2020 adopted during that meeting.

Board members were also briefed on IACA’s current and upcoming programmes including the new International Master in Anti-Corruption Compliance and Collective Action, the IACA Regional Summer Academy – Middle East, and numerous tailor-made trainings, as well as IACA’s fast-growing alumni network of anti-corruption and compliance professionals in 153 countries and jurisdictions.

In addition, Mr. Michael Hershman, the Chairperson of the ISAB and co-founder of Transparency International, was the guest of honour at the graduation ceremony for IACA’s 2015 – 2017 Master in Anti-Corruption Studies (MACS) class last Thursday.

The ISAB serves as an advisory organ to the Academy, reflecting on its activities and offering observations and advice on how the highest standards can be met and maintained. The Board currently consists of 13 eminent personalities with outstanding credentials from a wide variety of backgrounds.

Graduation of the MACS 2015 - 2017 Class

IACA proudly celebrated the graduation of the 2015 - 2017 Master in Anti-Corruption Studies (MACS) class in a festive ceremony at its Laxenburg campus on Thursday, just ahead of International Anti-Corruption Day.

“It is not governments who suffer as a result of corruption, it is ordinary people; this is why IACA must exist – for the people. Graduates of the MACS programme are the new anti-corruption leaders, and it is up to us,” highlighted Mr. Kent Kroeker, elected as the MACS student speaker, in his address to fellow graduates and the distinguished guests.

The 22 graduates, the third cohort to have completed this unique global academic programme, come from 16 countries around the world: Afghanistan, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, El Salvador, India, Japan, Liberia, Malawi, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Uganda, and the United States of America.

Their professional backgrounds are equally diverse; this year’s MACS graduates work in international organizations, private companies, government ministries, anti-corruption commissions, law enforcement bodies, NGOs, and the media.

The guest of honour at the ceremony was Mr. Michael Hershman, co-founder of Transparency International and Chair of IACA’s International Senior Advisory Board. In his speech, he discussed the anti-corruption cause and the beginnings of IACA more than a decade ago, offering the students some words of inspiration: “You are the champions of the cause, and it gives me hope that this group of individuals will continue the fight against corruption, a group that truly understands the damage corruption causes and the benefits of tackling it.”

In his laudatio, Mr. Martin Kreutner, the Dean of IACA, encouraged the graduates to take great pride in their achievements, and asked them to reflect on how much more they can still accomplish in the field of anti-corruption.

“As graduates, all of you have the opportunity to become leaders in anti-corruption and compliance in your own countries and beyond. In fact, I would argue that with your MACS education, you have a responsibility to assume this leadership role and inspire others to follow you,” he noted.

“If you can meet this leadership challenge, and inspire others as I hope the MACS has inspired you, then the best is yet to come,” he concluded.

Professor Peter Rosner of the University of Vienna and Chair of the Defence Committee, and Professor Elena Helmer, Director of Academic Programmes at IACA, also addressed the graduates and guests. All the speakers strongly commended the achievements of the new graduates, especially the quality and diversity of their master’s theses, and emphasized the significance of their efforts in the fight against corruption.

Mr. Pawan Kumar Sinha from India was honoured for having written the best master’s thesis with his work on “Exploring Effectiveness of Automation in Controlling Corruption in Customs: Theoretical and Empirical Evidences: A Case Study of India”. The award for the most innovative thesis was given to Ms. Danielle Lewin (Australia) for “The Mechanics of Family and Friendship-based Corrupt Partnerships: An Australian Case Study”.

In addition, Mr. Abdul Noman Mahdi (Afghanistan) and Mr. Johnny Saverio Ayik Saverio (South Sudan) were presented with the Dean’s Special Award for overcoming adversity, in recognition of their determination, commitment, and personal courage in successfully completing the programme.

The ceremony and reception that followed were joined by family, friends, faculty, and a wider network of distinguished guests.

The MACS was launched in 2012 as the world’s first postgraduate programme in anti-corruption and compliance. It consists of seven modules, combining in-class and distance learning, and a master’s thesis. The 2015 – 2017 class attended the in-class component of one module in Tbilisi, Georgia.

The next MACS programme starts in October 2018, and the application deadline is 31 May 2018.

pdfLaudatio by Mr. Martin Kreutner

Tailor-made Training for Korean Public Enterprises

A select group of senior auditors and managers of public enterprises from the Republic of Korea today completed a customized awareness-raising training programme at IACA’s Laxenburg campus.

Participants learnt from internationally renowned experts about corporate compliance, organizational integrity, effective private sector anti-corruption programmes, and corruption prevention with regard to media relations.

The programme included study visits to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Austrian Central Public Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Economic Crimes and Corruption (Zentrale Wirtschafts- und Korruptionsstaatsanwaltschaft).

Tailor-made trainings are IACA’s customized programmes for specific organizations, corporations, or institutions, addressing the unique challenges that each one faces in preventing and fighting corruption.

The Academy has delivered numerous such trainings in 2017, and more are scheduled for the coming months. For more information, click here.

Integrity-raising Event for Holzindustrie Schweighofer in Romania

IACA last week delivered a customized integrity-raising event in Suceava, Romania for staff of Austrian timber company Holzindustrie Schweighofer, having been invited by the firm’s senior management to help strengthen its compliance management system.

Participants learnt from internationally renowned experts about topics such as compliance, integrity, corruption, its different forms and measures to prevent corruption in a challenging environment.

The two one-day sessions were held on 23 and 24 November, and were designed for staff from the company’s sales, purchasing, logistics, and legal departments.

In addition to the two sessions on compliance and integrity in Romania, IACA will hold a Discussion Forum in Vienna in early December, providing a platform for the company’s senior management to address issues related to corruption, compliance, and reputation management.

Tailor-made trainings are IACA’s customized programmes for specific organizations, corporations, or institutions, addressing the unique challenges that each one faces in preventing and fighting corruption.

The Academy has delivered numerous such trainings in 2017, and more are scheduled for the coming months. For more information, click here.

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