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Abstract

In 2019, Bruno Masson, the vice chairman of Veolia's Ethics Committee, was preparing for a meeting on a rollout plan for a new whistleblowing system to more countries. Veolia, a global supplier of water, waste, and energy services, had recently gone through several incidents of corporate misconduct. In response, Veolia believed that strengthening corporate whistleblowing was an essential next step to prevent future incidents of misconduct. Given the positive experiences with its existing platform in the US, Veolia had originally tested this platform in Germany, where both corporate and legal protections for whistleblowers were weaker compared to the US. However, this rollout turned out to be unsuccessful. This initial setback prompted Masson to try a different approach to encourage more whistleblowing. They hired an outside vendor to provide Veolia with new whistleblowing capabilities. Would the new system be more successful in encouraging employees to report their concerns? How would the whistleblowing laws in Germany influence the effectiveness of this platform? Could this technology have negative implications for employee trust and productivity in the long run?
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Abstract

In 2019, Bruno Masson, the vice chairman of Veolia's Ethics Committee, was preparing for a meeting on a rollout plan for a new whistleblowing system to more countries. Veolia, a global supplier of water, waste, and energy services, had recently gone through several incidents of corporate misconduct. In response, Veolia believed that strengthening corporate whistleblowing was an essential next step to prevent future incidents of misconduct. Given the positive experiences with its existing platform in the US, Veolia had originally tested this platform in Germany, where both corporate and legal protections for whistleblowers were weaker compared to the US. However, this rollout turned out to be unsuccessful. This initial setback prompted Masson to try a different approach to encourage more whistleblowing. They hired an outside vendor to provide Veolia with new whistleblowing capabilities. Would the new system be more successful in encouraging employees to report their concerns? How would the whistleblowing laws in Germany influence the effectiveness of this platform? Could this technology have negative implications for employee trust and productivity in the long run?

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