Ethics and complaints

Transparency International is guided by an ethical framework and a commitment to uphold core principles in all the movement’s efforts. We undertake to be open, honest and accountable in our relationships with everyone we work with and with each other.

The Statement of Vision, Values and Guiding Principles provides the basis for all our work, shaping the individual codes of conduct of the chapters, secretariat and Board of Directors.

Update on ethics and integrity framework review

Following discussions with the appropriate staff and ethics bodies at Transparency International’s Secretariat in late 2017, the new Managing Director of TI-S, supported by the Board of TI, committed to reviewing the organisation’s ethics and integrity framework in 2018. This was considered necessary to ensure TI’s policies and procedures were robust, fit for purpose and met the high standards we demand of ourselves and others.

An independent expert review was concluded at the end of July 2018. It resulted in a number of recommendations which are currently being implemented. Two key initial steps are:

  • the appointment of an external Independent Ethics and Integrity Counselor, who can provide impartial legal and ethical advice to TI-S staff members;
  • and an Integrity Officer, who will be a full-time appointment to the TI-S staff.

Appointment of the External Independent Advisor - Transparency International Secretariat (effective 10 December 2018)

Dr. Rainer Buchert is a highly experienced Ombudsman fulfilling this role in over 40 large and medium-size companies in Germany. You can find more details in the link:

The contact details are the following:

Dr. Rainer Buchert

Bleidenstraße 1
60311 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

+49(0)69 71033330 or
+49(0)6105 921355

+49(0)69 71034444


Recruitment of the Integrity Officer – Transparency International Secretariat (effective 18 February 2019)

Anna Turus, former Associate Integrity Officer at UNHCR, officially joined TI-S in the role of Integrity Officer on 18 February 2019. She will review the policies and procedures relating to the integrity infrastructure and will support TI-S in addressing integrity issues.

The Integrity Officer can be contacted on for advice on integrity matters and for confidential reports on alleged, suspected or actual integrity violations pertaining to the Secretariat.

The HR department will continue to fulfil a proactive role regarding labor-related matters and other issues affecting staff in the workplace.

People at Transparency International around the world adhere to a Conflict of Interest Policy that establishes standards in situations where the interests or values of the movement may conflict with those of individuals entrusted with specific responsibilities for the movement.

Code of Conduct guides the day-to-day work of the secretariat staff. In addition, an Anti-Harassment Policy for events and meetings organised by the Transparency International Secretariat ensures a harassment-free environment for all participants. A Child Protection Policy forms part of our HR manual and provides guidance to secretariat staff on the definitions of child abuse and on the steps to take if encountered in the course of their work.

The Board of Directors has its own Code of Conduct which reflects the requirement for the publication of a Register of Interests for all members, as can be found following their biographies. At the national level, chapters develop their own Codes of Conduct with their board members also publishing Registers of Interests.

The Ethics Committee provides advice on ethical questions to the Board of Directors, the chapters and the secretariat.

The TI-S Whistleblower Policy can be called upon by any individuals working under any form of contract or agreement with TI-S to raise concerns about misconduct and wrongdoing such as acts of a fraudulent, dangerous or criminal nature, incidences of corruption or any other serious reputational risk for TI-S, and suspicion thereof.

In case of complaints or feedback about/to a TI Chapter

TI National Chapters are locally-based, independently-governed entities with their own internal ethics body. Complaints or feedback should be addressed to the competent body in the National Chapter itself. In case where it is felt that the Chapter is conflicted in dealing with the given case, please contact the secretariat by e-mailing by outlining (i) the problem, (ii) the steps that you have already taken with the Chapter and the results, (iii) how the Chapter would have been conflicted in dealing with the matter.