Integrity at Work Conference Agenda 2023

Integrity at Work Online Conference 2023: Going above and beyond – Fostering a culture of transparency, accountability and trust in Irish workplaces. 6 to 9 November, 2023 – Online and In-Person Event

This year’s Integrity at Work (IAW) conference explores the value of going above and beyond to foster a culture of transparency, accountability and trust in Irish workplaces.

The IAW conference presents a unique opportunity to learn from peers and experts in ethics and whistleblowing systems and explore the benefits of workplace transparency, accountability and trust.

The Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Act 2022 has set new standards for employers and regulators but fostering a culture of transparency and trust demands that we go beyond what’s required by law.

Participants will have a chance to hear and discuss developments in the law, whistleblowing systems, and novel approaches to promoting workplace transparency and trust from practitioners and academic experts including Dr Lauren Kierans, GSOC Commissioner Hugh Hume and Professor Muel Kaptein about the future of workplace integrity. We will also present the findings of the 2023 Integrity at Work survey measuring changing attitudes and experiences of whistleblowing in Irish workplaces.

The conference will take place over a series of seven online webinars with an in-person closing event with former Uber lobbyist and whistleblower, Mark MacGann at the Radisson Blu, Dublin on Thursday evening, at 5.30pm on 9 November.

Book your place here: Tickets


Monday 6 November  

09.30                   Welcome and Opening Remarks

  • Nadia Taylor – Integrity at Work Programme Manager
  • John Devitt – Chief Executive, Transparency International Ireland

09.40                   Opening Address

  • James Hamilton – Chair of Ireland’s Advisory Council against Economic Crime and Corruption

10.00 – 10.45     Keynote Speaker: Discussion on company ethics and compliance

  • Christian Hunt – Author of ‘Humanizing Rules’ and Founder of Human Risk
  • Gráinne Madden – Founder and Senior Consultant, GMJ Associates

11.00 – 12.15     Session 1 – Opening panel: Changing attitudes towards whistleblowing

One aim of the Integrity at Work initiative is to promote positive cultural change within Irish workplaces. In 2016, TI Ireland conducted its first Integrity at Work Survey which sought to measure attitudes and experiences of whistleblowing in Irish workplaces. This panel will present the findings of the 2023 Integrity at Work Survey which should provide some indicator of progress seven years on and explore its implications for policy makers as well as employers.

  • John Devitt – Chief Executive, Transparency International Ireland
  • John O’Mahoney – Director Behaviour & Attitudes
  • A J Brown – Professor of Public Policy & Law at Griffith University, Australia
  • Kate Kenny – Professor of Business and Society at University of Galway

14.00 – 15.15     Session 2 – Protected Disclosures: Reflecting on the enhanced role of Prescribed Persons and whistleblowing authorities

The EU Directive on Whistleblowing was transposed into Irish law in late 2022 and created new obligations for employers and prescribed persons. It also led to the establishment of an Office of the Protected Disclosure Commissioner (ODPC) in 2023 to receive reports on wrongdoing. The panel will discuss how prescribed persons and the OPDC will meet the challenges posed by the amended law and learn about how other competent authorities are addressing similar challenges elsewhere in the EU.

  • Damien Cahill – Assistant Principal Officer at the Office of the Protected Disclosures Commission
  • Zuzana Dlugošová – President of the Whistleblower Protection Office and Vice Chair of Network of European Integrity and Whistleblowing Authorities
  • Hugh Hume – Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission
  • Gráinne Madden – Founder and Senior Consultant, GMJ Associates

Tuesday 7 November

10.00 – 11.15      Session 3 – Protected Disclosures and Reporting Channels: Encouraging staff to speak up in a changing legal environment

The Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Act 2022 also includes new obligations on public and private organisations to implement internal whistleblowing systems. It also introduced new duties to follow up and feedback on reports, as well as sanctions for penalisation as well as breaching confidentiality. The panel will discuss challenges and opportunities when implementing internal channels, as well as investigating reports and explore best practice principles from the ISO 37002 and Transparency International’s new Internal Whistleblowing Systems tool.

  • Muel Kaptein – Professor in Business Ethics and Integrity at the RSM Erasmus University
  • Lorraine Heffernan – Solicitor at ByrneWallace LLP
  • Marie Terracol – Whistleblower Protection Lead at Transparency International

14.00 – 15.15     Session 4 – Protected Disclosures: Conflicting Rights and Responsibilities

This panel discussion will reflect on the new rights and responsibilities arising from the amended Protected Disclosures Act and their implications for reporting persons, respondents and employers. It will also explore the complex interplay of obligations around data protection, confidentiality and the discloser and respondents’ respective rights to information.

  • Dr Simon Gerdermann – Principle Investigator of the ‘Impact Analysis of German and European Whistleblowing Law’, University of Göttingen
  • Ray McMahon – Chief Superintendent, Longford/Roscommon Garda Division
  • Andrew Carroll – Assistant Commissioner at the Data Protection Commission
  • Dr Vigjilenca Abazi – Co-Founder & Executive Director, European Whistleblowing Institute

Wednesday 8 November

10.00 – 11.15   Session 5 – New Whistleblowing Tools & Resources for Employers and Employees

Good quality information and guidance is essential to help people report safely and see that their concerns are acted on appropriately. Transparency International Ireland’s latest 2023 Speak Up Safely Guide is among a number of new tools that will be presented during this panel which will also showcase new resources for confidential online reporting, employer feedback systems and workers specialising in information and communications technology.

  • Jennifer Gibson – Legal Director of the Whistleblower Protection Program at The Signals Network
  • Katherine Bradshaw – National Lead for Communications & Engagement at National Guardian’s Office
  • Susanna Ferro – Project Manager at GlobaLeaks
  • Ida Nowers – Knowledge and Policy Manager at TI Ireland

14.00 – 15.15     Session 6 – The Protected Disclosures Act 2022: What have we learned (nearly) one year on?

Although the Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Act only came into effect at the beginning of 2023, it could hold the same potential to transform workplace systems and culture in the same way the original Act did in 2014. This session will reflect on the most important changes to the legislation and how they could change the way workers, employers and regulators share and act on future disclosures of wrongdoing.

  • Dr Lauren Kierans BL – Assistant Professor of Law at Maynooth University
  • Emmet Whelan – Partner at ByrneWallace LLP
  • Rory Treanor – Barrister specialising in Employment Law and Workplace Investigations

Thursday 9 November

10.00 – 11.15     Session 7 – Going above and beyond in smaller organisations

Although employers with more than 50 staff will be required by law to have whistleblowing procedures in place from December 2023, smaller organisations will also be under pressure to see that their systems are in place to meet their legal obligations. This panel will discuss what steps employers in small not-for-profit organisations are doing to make their workplaces safe for people to speak up and act with integrity.

  • Celine Pinzio – Integrity Manager at Transparency International
  • Elizabeth Gardiner – CEO at Protect
  • Karol Balfe – CEO at Action Aid Ireland
  • Diarmaid O’Corrbui – CEO at Carmichael

Session 8 – Fireside Chat and Networking Event

Former Uber lobbyist and whistleblower Mark MacGann and the Irish Times’ Karlin Lillington will discuss the importance of transparency, accountability and trust in both corporate and public life at the Radisson Blu, Golden Lane Dublin 8 on Thursday evening, at 5.30pm on 9 November. This event is an opportunity for IAW conference attendees to meet in person over drinks and canapés for the first time in three years.