June 19, 2014

Faculty member provides anti-corruption insights in Bosnia

Just before the start of his Global Ethics and Compliance course at Fisher this summer, David Freel, senior lecturer in the Department of Management and Human Resources, embarked on a global experience to see firsthand how his area of expertise was being applied halfway around the world.

David Freel

At the invitation of the U.S. Embassy and the United States Agency for International Development, Freel spent a week in Bosnia and Herzegovina discussing ethics and the country’s new whistleblower law. He attended a two-day, anti-corruption conference and spoke with the Chamber of Commerce in Sarajevo, government officials, business leaders and senior officials from a number of international organizations about the new law – the first passed by a European country.

“It was a great opportunity to see how the experiences of a few brave people who stood up to corruption in Bosnia helped their parliament unanimously pass this legislation,” Freel said. “Part of the reason I chose to go was to see the great lengths Bosnians were going to in order to fight corruption.”

Freel, who helped draft transparency polices adopted by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation in 2011 and whose ethics and anti-corruption consulting has also taken him to Jordan, said the opportunity to see how corruption is being addressed around the world enhances his perspective in the classroom. Forty-two graduate students have enrolled in Freel’s Global Ethics and Compliance course.

“I believe if you’re going to talk about integrity, ethics and leadership, you’ve got to understand the practical applications of theory, the research and support for that,” he said. “I want my students to think critically through ethics and compliance issues before they get caught off guard by not anticipating or recognizing the signals of ethical challenges to leadership.”

Freel’s extensive national and international experience underscores Fisher’s commitment to providing students with insights that span the globe.

“Now, with information flowing so much more quickly, almost any business is in global business,” Freel said. “You might be competing against people on the Internet or in other places where you may not know where your product is going. You have to recognize that we’re not just doing business in Ohio or Columbus any longer – we’re doing business around the world.”