IPU Short Course: Witness Prep.
John Thornton, M.Sc. Grad. Dip., C.R.R.A, Instructor
Janice Beecher, Ph.D., IPU Director Moderator
June 18, 2020 – 12 Noon to 3 pm Eastern Time Zone.
Live online learning.
Register online or by email (email@example.com).
Registration fee: $165.
Discounts available for IPU Affiliates and groups.
CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDITS
Attendees will receive a certificate of attendance for this three-hour program and 10 credits toward the
Certificate of Continuing Regulatory Education (www.ipu.msu.edu/ccre). IPU will also assist attendees in earning credits in their respective fields.
IPU short courses are designed to complement full IPU programs that provide a deeper interdisciplinary exploration of regulatory theory, practice, jurisdiction, and market structures. This IPU short course provides a concise and comprehensive introduction to and refresher on testifying in administrative regulatory hearings as an expert witness. The course was developed over many years, reflecting the experience and insight of the instructor.
Regulation is a quasi-judicial process guided by administrative law. Regulatory decisions that are “in the public interest” must be supported by the evidence found within the “four corners of the record.” Expert witnesses enrich the record with written and oral testimony from various perspectives, including utility companies, consumer and environmental advocates, commercial and industrial groups, attorneys general, and commission staff. This IPU short course is designed to help professionals navigate the witness experience and hone their skills to be as effective as possible in their respective roles across various types of regulatory proceedings.
IPU’s Witness Preparation short course offers a great value in terms of the cost of participation, independent university sponsorship, a highly experienced course instructor, and professionally developed presentation and supplemental materials.
Course Learning Objectives
- To understand the role of expert testimony in the regulatory process.
- To build confidence by preparing regulatory professionals for the experience of acting as an expert witness.
- To appreciate the essential vocabulary of testifying and proven practices.
- To discern the key elements of the cross-examination process.
- To become a more effective participant in administrative regulatory proceedings as an expert witness, legal counsel, administrative law judge (hearing examiner), or regulator.
- The critical importance of preparation, including pre-filed written testimony
- The role of the expert witness and key steps in preparation
- Overview of the cross-examination process with techniques and tips
- Witness attire, comportment, attitude, body language, and “staying in character”
- Confidence on the stand, public speaking, and persuasion (“making the case”)
- Value of rehearsal, mock hearings, and visualization
- Participating in hearings via remote video conferencing
- Cautionary notes for expert witnesses
- Resources for witnesses and administrative law judges
Who Should Attend?
This program will be useful to anyone involved in regulatory proceedings and interesting in alternative methods of dispute resolution. IPU welcomes lifelong learners from any perspective to all of our programs, including:
- State and local public utility regulators and policymakers.
- Regulatory accountants, auditors, and financial analysts.
- Attorneys, economists, engineers, and consultants.
- Public, consumer, and environmental advocates
- Employees of private, public, and not-for-profit utilities.
- Members of utility boards and other local public officials.
About the Instructor
John Thornton, M.Sc., Grad. Dip., C.R.R.A. (firstname.lastname@example.org). Mr. Thornton is an independent utility consultant, formerly with the Oregon Public Utility Commission and Arizona Corporation Commission. He is a graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science where he specialized in corporate finance and financial economics. He has analyzed regulated utilities or testified on utility finance for over twenty-one years and he has successfully prosecuted cases ranging from utility rate cases to the first foreign purchase of a U.S. utility.
Format: Live online (synchronous) learning offered by from IPU-MSU.
Materials: Attendees will have access to electronic materials, including presentations and useful supplemental resources.
Attendee list: Out of respect for your privacy, and in keeping with our educational mission, we do not publicize our attendee lists in advance of our programs.
Cancellation and refunds: Cancellations are generally accepted until course materials are made available during the week before the program.
Comments and complaints: IPU welcomes program input and feedback. Participants will be asked to complete program evaluation forms. Comments and complaints about the program may be directed to IPU Director, Dr. Janice A. Beecher (email@example.com) or the IPU Operations Manager, Erin West (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Questions. For questions about IPU educational programs and role in serving the regulatory policy community, please contact IPU Director Dr. Janice Beecher (email@example.com). See a list of IPU FAQ’s here.
NASBA National Registry Statement
The Institute of Public Utilities is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State Boards of Accountancy have the final authority on the acceptance of individual course for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website: www.nasbaregistry.org.
Program level: This short course is classified as both “basic” and is accessible to relatively new personnel working in the regulatory policy community who will be participating in formal regulatory proceedings.
Program prerequisites: No formal prerequisites apply to this program. However, course materials and supplemental resources will be available for prereading in advance of the program through the IPU program page at ipu.msu.edu.
Program delivery: The program delivery method is classified as a “group-live” synchronous remote learning event comparable to in-person training. Expert instructors will provide lecture and supplementation materials, and active learning and participation will be encouraged.
Field of study: This program is relevant to the following NASBA fields of study: administrative practice, accounting and auditing (corporate and governmental), business law, economics, finance, taxes, regulatory ethics, and specialized knowledge and applications. For program details and registration, please visit the IPU program page at ipu.msu.edu.