ao link
Who's Who Legal
Who's Who Legal
Thought Leaders

Thought Leaders

Thought Leader

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

David Turner has over 20 years’ experience advising Fortune 500 clients on data analytics, in matters ranging from litigation response to investigations and regulatory issues.

Questions & Answers

The views expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily the views of FTI Consulting, Inc, its management, its subsidiaries, its affiliates or its other professionals. FTI Consulting, Inc, including its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a consulting firm and is not a certified public accounting firm or a law firm.

David Turner leads FTI Consulting’s data and analytics group for the Americas and serves as the firm’s Washington, DC office coordinator. For more than 22 years, David has provided consulting services to Fortune 500 clients in the areas of data analytics, focusing on event-based transactions. His concentrations have included complex data analysis, dispute resolution, investigations, regulatory and litigation response (including experience with FCPA and OFAC violations), information technology consulting and business performance improvement. 

You lead a 180-person data and analytics practice – what is the most important part of that job? 

Without a doubt the identification, attraction, training and retention of top talent; our team consists of the best and brightest in the industry. It’s my responsibility to ensure that we have the best people who have the proper tools in their toolbox to assist our clients to solve increasingly complex issues. Also, having effective communication within our team is critical; deploying the right framework to ensure our client teams are leveraging our most efficient and advanced solutions, applying the best problem-solving approaches for our clients. Our clients expect that from their data analytics professionals.

Are there any specific industries where your practice tends to focus its work? 

Certainly, we see significant activity within the regulated industries – financial services, insurance, life sciences and pharma, energy, commercial aviation, automotive, to name a few. Our clients are faced with significant regulatory pressure and often find themselves subjected to intense government and public scrutiny. Developing expertise in these industries through our experience helps us better understand how our client’s enterprise data flows throughout global networks and often very dynamic corporate data footprints.  

There are a lot of buzz words in this space – clustering, NLP, etc. Can you explain why there are so many seemingly new tools or solutions in data? 

For starters, the explosion of data availability and relevance has resulted in datasets that are often disparate, cumbersome, and suffering from data integrity or incompleteness. Our job is often to develop the key insights into data while appropriately handling and explaining the data imperfections. Our clients’ data often has significant flaws such as missing data or datasets that are not easily or logically comparable. Using automation and advanced techniques (such as the application of machine learning algorithms) enables us to detect possible patterns and infer specific data rules; this is often no longer achievable through more classic data analytics identification techniques.

How has the explosion of data (open source web-based datasets including social media) impacted your approach to data analytics? 

Data is just so much more complex than it was even two years ago; the days of handling structured and unstructured data in a siloed analytical environment generally no longer apply. There are new studies and statistics we see every day speaking to the massive amount of relevant company data that is generated and warehoused. The datasets are emanating from more challenging sources (ie, open-source data, free text, distributed ledgers, to name a few).  As such, we’ve had to get surgical and intelligent about how we analyse this information, using advanced techniques such as NLP, clustering and network analytics.

What are the most important responsibilities you have as the data analytics team on a case?  

As the data experts, we are the first and last line of responsibility for the facts – identifying the right data, culling out the irrelevant data “chaff” from the valuable “wheat,” ensuring the data validity and accuracy, and then ultimately coming to the right conclusions. Whether it’s the number of fraudulent transactions, identifying suspected instances of financial crime, or quantifying the volume of exposed customers in a data breach – we absolutely have to get that right. The progression and strategy of the case, as developed in concert with our senior client personnel and their counsel, are all driven by the data that we handle.

What has been more valuable in your career – your education or your experience? 

Without a doubt, my experience – my degree and early training is in commerce and finance. But over my career, I have developed and trained up on the technical capabilities over time as the data landscape has continued to evolve. I started my career simply analysing self-contained MS Access databases; today, our team leverages techniques like feature engineering, and leveraging tools like Elasticsearch and Neo4j, to assess billions of records, often comingled with terabytes of relevant semi-structured or unstructured datasets. But even with the explosion of data size and all of the advances in technology tools and data analytic techniques, our clients tend to still have the same questions – who, what, when and why? Having the ability to communicate with our clients and leverage our decades of experience to present and translate the findings is crucial to effective solution delivery.

What impact have the recent privacy rulings (GDPR, LGPD (Brazil), CCPA) had on data analysis and investigatory strategies? 

We’ve had to become hyper-diligent on the initial stages of data identification and handling; there are some significant risks and exposure simply in how data is accessed. Many of our clients face significant cross-border and jurisdictional challenges in matters where stakes are highest; having global awareness and capabilities is now a must-have for such matters. We’ve shaped our global team of data, legal and privacy experts to be able to layer in quickly and effectively to deal with these various regulations and requirements.

What skills have you found vital to your job? 

Consulting remains in its truest form of a relationship business; being able to articulate our findings and translate technical-speak into a narrative that our clients understand is critical. Our team of data analysts and scientists are experts at visualisation techniques that help our clients present our findings to outside stakeholders, such as regulators or in a court of law.

Global Leader

Data - Data Experts 2021

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

David Turner has over 20 years’ experience advising Fortune 500 clients on data analytics, in matters ranging from litigation response to investigations and regulatory issues.


David Turner is a Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting and is based in Washington, D.C. where he leads the Data & Analytics group for the Americas and serves as the Washington D.C. Office Coordinator. For more than twenty two years, Mr. Turner has provided consulting services to Fortune 500 clients in the areas of data analytics, focusing on event based transactions. His concentrations have included complex data acquisition and analysis, dispute resolution, investigation, regulatory and litigation response (including experience with FCPA and OFAC violations), information technology consulting and business performance improvement.  Mr. Turner was named in 2017 to 2019 by “Who’s Who Legal” as one of the top forty global data experts and as a 2019 and 2020 as a Global Thought Leader.

Mr Turner has extensive experience conducting corporate investigations, where he has handled complex analysis and strategies for issues arising from FCPA and anticorruption enforcement, corporate inquiries, OFAC sanctions, whistleblower actions, audit board issues, and asset liability management, most recently in the financial services, pharmaceutical and automotive industries.

He is an expert in providing complex data analytics for litigation and investigation support, including detailed document and data interrogations and management, ERP consulting and analysis, including the application of emerging and innovative technology to create client solutions that leverage enhanced and efficient automation.

He also has significant engagement management experience including developing with and maintaining client relationships, multifaceted project planning and management work plans, supervising and training senior and staff consultants and managing and meeting all engagement deadlines and budget requirements. Mr Turner has for the past 20 years trained professionals in areas of financial damage calculation, economic and financial modeling, and engagement management, database design and development, and insurance allocation theory.

Prior to joining FTI Consulting, he managed economic and financial consulting services at Arthur Andersen and information technology and process improvement consulting at Capital One Financial.

Mr Turner holds a BS in commerce with concentrations in finance and marketing from the University of Virginia, and is a member of the Information Governance Initiative (IGI) and is an advisory board member for Back on My Feet DC.

Law Business Research
Law Business Research Ltd
Meridian House, 34-35 Farringdon Street
London EC4A 4HL, UK
© Law Business Research Ltd 1998-2021. All rights reserved.
Company No.: 03281866