Uniform Principles and Guidelines for Investigations, 2nd Edition

Soon after the creation of the CII in 1999, the investigative offices of participating international organizations recognized the value of harmonizing their practices. In April 2003, at the 4th Conference, participants endorsed a set of common principles and guidelines for investigations. With the aim of continuously improving investigative practices, a revised set of Uniform Principles and Guidelines for Investigations was endorsed by participating organizations in 2009, at the 10th Conference.

As the name suggests, the Uniform Principles and Guidelines are intended to be used as guidance in the conduct of investigations subject to the regulations, rules, policies and the privileges and immunities applicable in each organization. They do not and are not intended to bind the organizations or confer, impose or imply any duties, obligations or rights actionable in a court of law or in administrative proceedings on the organizations. To this end, nothing in the principles and guidelines should be interpreted as affecting the rights and obligations of each organization per its rules, policies and procedures, nor the privileges and immunities afforded to each organization by international treaty, customary international law and the laws of the respective member state.

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General Principles for Reviews of CII Investigation Offices (conducted by external experts)

In 2012, at the 13th Conference, the participating organizations recognized the value of developing general principles and guidance for conducting reviews of their investigative offices by outside peers (so-called ‘peer reviews’). Indeed, the preamble to the Uniform Principles and Guidelines for Investigations (2nd ed.) acknowledges the need for investigative offices to periodically undergo an external quality assessment in order to ascertain their conformity with the organization’s legal framework and generally accepted investigation standards and to promote continuous enhancement of the investigative function.

In 2014, at the 15th Conference, a set of General Principles for Reviews was adopted. The Principles provide a framework to guide an investigative office’s self-initiated review of its approaches and activities by an external peer. The framework is a guide only and is optional and non-binding. It also is not intended to apply to reviews of investigative offices that are not self-initiated.

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