Glossary of Terms


Asian Development Bank

Administrative Tribunal

Second-tier judicial body with an appellate function.  Frequently referred to as the ‘AT’.  Often the tribunal of final appeal within an international organisation.  Normally comprised of three to five judges

Administrative Decision

A decision taken in the administration of the staff of an organisation


African Development Bank


Bid Evaluation Committee


Bid Evaluation Report

Case Conference

A meeting with your lawyer(s) in the case


The financial cost, comprised of fees and disbursements, which is incurred as a result of instructing a lawyer in respect of the matter in issue


The process by which one MDB debars an entity due to that entity being debarred or otherwise sanctioned by another MDB


A sanction imposed by an MDB on an individual or company found to have engaged in a sanctionable practice (e.g., corruption or fraud). A debarred entity is unable to participate in a project financed in whole or in part that MDB. Also see ‘cross-debarment’


The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development

Direct Access

The Bar Code of Conduct has been amended to permit barristers in self-employed practice to undertake work on direct instructions from lay clients, without the need for a solicitor or other professional client to be instructed

Disciplinary Procedures

The rules which govern an international organisation’s disciplinary process

Disciplinary Proceedings

An international organisation’s internal process of discipline, which normally commences on receipt of an investigative report from that organisation’s internal investigative office

Dispute Tribunal

The body within an international organisation which is responsible for review of disputed disciplinary findings and decisions


The US Department of Justice


European Investment Bank


The Evaluation and Suspensions Officer at the World Bank. EOs act as a filter to ensure that only meritorious cases proceed to the Sanctions Committee


The Office of Evaluation and Suspensions at the World Bank


The US Fraud and Corrupt Practices Act 1977

Grievance Committee

First-tier judicial body. Its role is traditionally fact-finding. Normally composed of one judge and up to two lay assessors

Grievance Procedures

The process by which an administrative decision of an international organisation may be grieved by an adversely affected staff member


An appearance before a committee, tribunal or other competent body

Human Rights

are moral principles that set out certain standards of human behaviour, and are regularly protected as legal rights in national and international law. They are commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being. Human rights are thus conceived as universal (applicable everywhere) and egalitarian (the same for everyone).

Initial decision

The decision that adversely affects the employee

International Organisation

International organisation, such as the United Nations and the World Bank, are bodies whose membership is normally comprised of sovereign states and which are created by means of multilateral treaties.  They enjoy a number of privileges and immunities, including immunity from legal suit and, as such, they have adopted and abide by their own legal system

International Administrative Law

The employment law of the international organisations


International humanitarian law or jus in bello (sometimes known as the Laws of War or the Laws of Armed Conflict (“LOAC”) is a body of law that seeks upon humanitarian grounds to limit the effects of armed conflict. IHL protects persons who are not or who are no longer participating in hostilities and it restricts the means and methods of warfare.

Jus ad bellum

(Latin: the Right to War) The jus ad bellum relates to the resort to armed conflict (the reason you fight) and embodies those criteria that legitimise the use of force by one state against another (e.g., self defence c.f., jus in bello)

Jus in bello

(Latin: the Law in War) The jus in bello is the law that governs the way in which warfare is conducted (how you fight).


Inter-American Development Bank


International Bank for Reconstruction and Development


International Competitive Bidding


International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes


International Development Agency


International Finance Corporation


International Governmental Organisations


International Monetary Fund


The WBG’s Integrity Vice Presidency, which has the mandate within the Sanctions Process to investigate and prosecute globally allegations of corruption and fraud on Bank funded projects

Joint Appeals Board

Often the appellate body within an international organisation that deals with appeals from disciplinary findings


Multilateral Development Banks, such as the AfDB, the ADB, the EBRD, the IADB and the World Bank etc


Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency


Non-Governmental Organisations


Nordic Investment Bank

Normal Administrative Process

The process by which an employee initially seeks to resolve his or her complaint

Notice of Sanctions Proceedings (NSP)

Notice of Sanctions Proceedings (“NSP”) is the document sent to a company by the World Bank’s Office of Evaluation and Suspension (“OES”) in which the Bank formally accuses the company of having engaged in a sanctionable practice on a Bank financed project. It acts in effect as the indictment. The NSP is based on the Statement of Accusations and Evidence sent to the OES by INT.

Notice of Temporary Suspension (NTS)

Notice of Temporary Suspension (NTS) is the document sent to a company by the World Bank’s Office of Evaluation & Suspension (“OES”) informing the company that it is in effect debarred temporarily from bidding on contracts emanating from projects financed by the Bank. The NTS forms part of a system known as Early Temporary Suspension. It is implemented at the request of the Bank’s Integrity Vice Presidency (INT) and precedes the issuance by that office of a Statement of Accusations and Evidence to the OES.


Office of Anti-corruption and Integrity of the Asian Development Bank


Office of the Chief Compliance Officer at the EBRD

OECD Convention

Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions


Office de Lutte Antifraude, the European Commission Anti-Fraud Agency


Office de Lutte Antifraude, the European Commission Anti-Fraud Agency


Procurement Support Agency


Program/Project Support Unit


Regional Development Banks

Redress of Grievance

The process by which an employee seeks relief from the decision that adversely affects him or her


The process by which the MDBs refer their final investigative reports to law enforcement agencies, such as the UK’s SFO and the USA’s DoJ

Regulatory Decision

A decision that affects more than one employee, such as a group of employees or the entire staff of the international organisation

Rule of Law

The Rule of Law is a principle of governance, which, at its most basic, dictates that all people and institutions are subject and accountable to the law and that the law must be fairly applied and enforced (no one is above the law, including heads of state). The Rule of Law operates so as to restrict the arbitrary exercise of power by subjecting it to well-defined and established laws. The Rule of Law is therefore an anathema to dictators and to anarchy.


The penalties imposed by an MDB on entities found culpable of engaging in a sanctionable practice

Sanctions Board

A board constituted by an MDB in order to determine whether an entity has engaged in a sanctionable practice on a Bank financed project

Sanctions Committee

A committee constituted by an MDB in order to determine whether an entity has engaged in a sanctionable practice on a Bank financed project

Sanctions Process

The process by which MDBs sanction entities accused of sanctionable practices

Sanctionable Practices

Corruption, fraud, collusion, coercion and obstruction


The US Securities and Exchange Commission


The UK Serious Fraud Office

Staff Association

The body within an international organisation which represents the staff members employed by that organisation

Staff Council

Please see Staff Association

Star Chamber

Star Chamber is a term that today is used to describe legal or administrative bodies with strict, arbitrary rulings and secretive proceedings. It is a pejorative term and casts doubt on the legitimacy of the proceedings.


Transparency International


World Bank Task Team Leader


United Nations


United Nations Convention Against Corruption


Specialised Agencies of the UN, such as the World Bank


World Bank’s Voluntary Disclosure Program


World Bank Group, which comprises the IBRD, IFC, MIGA, IDA and ICSID