About

The Why / What / Who

a-re-té [Ahr-et’-ay] noun

virtue, excellence, being the best you can be, reaching your highest human potential

At AretéWork we focus on sustainable effective ethical cultures in organisations. We are part of the global effort to reduce corruption through improving the business environment. We believe that an effective ethical culture or high cultural capital is good for business, employees and society.


Ethical Business Practice & Ethical Business Regulation

Book cover: Ethical Business Practice and Regulation A Behavioural and Values-Based Approach to Compliance and Enforcement

A new paradigm in compliance and enforcement based on behavioural science and ethics.

The book (and our practice) draws on findings from behavioural science, responsive regulation, safety and business and integrity management to create a practical and holistic approach.

It is an essential blueprint for sustainable business – and effective future regulation.


Some of the many organisations we have worked with

Some of the organisations we have worked with at AretéWork


Our Core Values

Making a Difference

Our purpose is to make a difference by working with others to create effective ethical organisational cultures; thereby fighting corruption one step at a time.

Humour & Fun

People learn more when they are enjoying themselves; there is no
reason why ethics and compliance has to be boring!

Continuous Learning and Openness

Our highest potential can only be reached through constantly seeking to learn and understand, by being curious and open to new ideas and diverse perspectives.

This is how we are doing our bit to advance the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Two practical examples of this on a wider scale is our work for the UNODC’s Ethics & Integrity Task Force for Tertiary Education (also known as E4J).

Also, AretéWork is an OECD Knowledge Partner for the Anti-Corruption & Integrity Forum.


More about AretéWork

Ruth Steinholtz established AretéWork in 2011 to further her mission of making a difference in the world of business ethics and by doing so to play a modest role in stopping corruption and its widespread and devastating consequences. The usual compliance focused approaches have failed to create ethical companies committed to doing the right thing and Ruth believes there is a better way, based on values.

Barrett Values Centre - Certified CTT Consultant

Ruth has continued the work she began while General Counsel of Borealis AG championing a values-based approach and has since helped organisations shift their focus towards building a strong ethical culture while improving the compliance tools that are required by law. Her mantra is “ethics is everyone’s responsibility” and this underpins all aspects of her work, seeking to engage as many people as possible in creating and maintaining the norms and institutions that allow people to bring ethics and integrity to work, all the time, everywhere, and not just on posters on conference room walls.


The AretéWork Advisory Board

Roswitha Reisinger

General Counsel with 15+ years of international experience in managing complex legal needs for highly reputed organizations with activities in more than 60 countries in Europe and emerging markets.

Christopher Hodges

Professor of Justice Systems, and head of the Swiss Re Research Programme on Civil Justice Systems, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford. He is a Supernumerary Fellow of Wolfson College Oxford.

Christopher is a frequent panellist and speaker on values and the author of many books; including Ethical Business Practice and Regulation: A behavioural and values-based approach to compliance and enforcement.


Let’s build #EthicalBusinessPractice together.