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Compliance and the Zeitgeist in Germany

Tom Fox | October 27, 2015

I have always been fascinated with the zeitgeist. In the world of anti-bribery and anti-corruption compliance, one rarely has the chance to observe the zeitgeist in action. However I think we are now seeing it play out in Germany in a public way. It all involves the Made in Germany brand, which I would have said speaks to quality, excellence and honesty.

Foremost is the Volkswagen emissions-testing scandal. It has gone from the most trusted car manufacturer in the world, to an organization which seems not to know its left hand from its right hand, or even where either hand resides. This is much more than a death from 1,000 cuts where information dribbles out on a daily basis; this is a company which cannot seem to make clear what cars, in what countries, or even what engines, may be part of the scandal.

Now we have one of Germans’ most respected figures, Franz Beckenbauer, under investigation by FIFA. Beckenbauer was a star on the West German winning World Cup team...

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