This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
KICUKIRO COLLEGE OF TECHNOLOGY CIVIL ENG & MECHANICAL
LECTURER: Eng MUREKASHUNGWE Evergiste, MSc
ACADEMIC YEAR: 2011
the original Code of Ethics published by the ASCE in 1914 focused mainly on engineers’ relationships with their clients and their peers. These contained no explicit reference to the public or to the environment. Throughout the early to middle part of the 20th century.” The earliest codes of ethical conduct for engineers were developed in the early 1900’s. Why is it Important to Study and Practice Engineering Ethics? We reviewed one definition of Ethics earlier in the course. published ethical codes in 1912.1. professional societies began to recognize the need for Codes of Conduct to address responsibility to the public. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). A second definition of Ethics is: Motivation based on ideas of right and wrong. It is his duty to interest himself in public welfare. the engineer will discharge his duties with fidelity to the public. and to be ready to apply his special knowledge for the benefit of mankind. The loyalty was to the employer. On October 28. Among the provisions of this code was: “As the keystone of professional conduct is integrity. A Short History of Engineering Ethics One definition of Ethics is: The rules or standards governing the conduct of a person or the conduct of the members of a profession.” Today. dozens of professional engineering societies have published codes of ethics. and with fairness and impartiality to all. his employers and clients. as well as responsibilities to an engineer’s employer. and therefore avoid every act contrary to this duty. 1946. The AIEE code stated: "The engineer should consider the protection of a client's or employer's interests his first professional obligation. Evergiste. professional societies generally subscribed to the belief that ethics was a matter of an engineer’s personal responsibility and not appropriate for a written code. Most of these codes of conduct follow the ECPD/ABET model and are quite similar to each other." Likewise. which is now the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The American Institute of Electrical Engineers (now "the IEEE"). for example. MSc| III year KCT rd . stated in 1877 “that it is inexpedient for the Society to instruct its members as to their duties in private professional matters. 1|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. and did not address responsibilities to the public. A good example is the Fundamental Canons of the Code of Ethics for Engineers published by the NSPE and will be discussed later. the Board of Directors of the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) adopted a "Canon of Ethics for Engineers" that was prepared by the Engineers' Council for Professional Development (ECPD). which have evolved since the early days to include responsibilities to both the public and the environment. Prior to 1900.
this arrangement looks like it might be a “win-win situation”. Engineers should be motivated to “do the right thing”. For example.There is a moral component to Ethics. you want to do the right thing. You get help with the engineering and the vendor gets his foot in the door. other topics covered by the Codes of Conduct may not be so intuitive. NSPE Fundamental Canon N°5 states “Avoid deceptive acts”. But. Below are some of the consequences that can result from unethical behavior: Personal injury and damage to property due to your engineering designs.which is incentive enough for most of us to practice ethics – there are other reasons why it is important for you to act ethically in your professional practice. It is important to study engineering ethics so that you will understand the standards governing what is acceptable behavior in the practice of engineering. the NSPE Code of Ethics for Engineers prohibits the acceptance of free engineering designs from equipment suppliers for specifying their product. So. On the surface. Evergiste. Why Practice Engineering Ethics? OK. These standards represent the collective experience of many learned professionals who have studied Ethics and have adapted the Codes of Conduct based on observing the impacts of engineers’ actions over many years. Once you know what the rules are. It is pretty widely accepted in all walks of life that deception is unethical. The standards governing acceptable behavior for engineers have been developed in the form of Codes of Conduct adopted by professional organizations. For example. such as NSPE. you know that it’s important to study engineering ethics to learn what is considered to be appropriate behavior for professional engineers. the free engineering design provided to you by the vendor is a form of compensation that creates a conflict of interest. Many of these standards are intuitive. why is it important to follow them? Setting aside the issues of right and wrong for a moment . Seems obvious. But. MSc| III year KCT rd . which can result in litigation against you Disciplinary action by your state licensing board and any professional societies with whom you are a member 2|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. why do you need to study Ethics? Why Study Engineering Ethics? We need to go back to the first definition of Ethics: The rules or standards governing the conduct of a person or the conduct of the members of a profession. doesn’t it? Of course.
MSc| III year KCT rd . Evergiste. its objective is to increase your ability as engineers to responsibly confront moral issues raised by technological activity. character. Definitions: Morality and Ethics Concerns the goodness of voluntary human conduct that affects the self or other living things Morality (Latin mores) usually refers to any aspect of human action Ethics (Greek ethos) commonly refers only to professional behavior Engineering ethics is (1) the study of moral issues and decisions confronting individuals and organizations involved in engineering and (2) the study of related questions about moral conduct. 2. and build up an awareness of various views of ethical issues as well as professionals ethical rights and responsibilities. The course will develop a framework on which professional and ethical issues can be analyzed. resolving moral issues and justifying moral decisions in engineering practice. at the time you will enter the professional world To responsibly confront moral issues raised by technological activity To know how to deal with ethical dilemmas in their professional lives To achieve moral autonomy Goals: Engineering ethics course is not about preaching virtue rather. ideals and relationships of peoples and organizations involved in technological development or simply the study of understanding moral values. 3|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M.- Embarrassment to you. your employer and the engineering profession Loss of income due to termination by your employer or being ostracized within your local engineering community as a result of your actions Briefly it is required to study engineering ethics for the following reasons: To be able to follow an explicit or implicit ethical code.
Whistle blowing: is alerting relevant persons to some moral or legal corruption. and with a willingness to accept the penalty. maintaining integrity. Martin Luther King. in Letter from a Birmingham Jail. An example: “One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly. Do you agree? It is always wrong to intentionally take an innocent life? The right course of action is to weigh the consequences of action and choose the action that leads to the greatest good for the greatest number? Two Valid Moral Positions The first is “Kantianism” Kant: Right or wrong regardless of consequences The second is “Utilitarianism” Utilitarianism: Right or wrong depending on consequences Most people agree with both positions The Four Main Ethical Virtues . MSc| III year KCT rd . rights. or ideals come into conflict. rights.” Rev.- Ethical dilemma: Situations in which two or more moral obligations. Moral Autonomy: Autonomous individuals think for themselves and do not assume that customs are always right. independent of culture or personal opinion. Moral Dilemmas: Situations in which two or more moral obligations. or ideals come into conflict. they seek to reason and live by general principles and their motivation is to do what is morally reasonable for its own sake. lovingly. Evergiste. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust and willingly accepts the penalty… is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.Temperance (emotions): control attraction to positive emotions 4|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. 1963. Jr. Code of ethics: a consensus on the morality of engineering decisions which defines guidelines for moral conduct by all engineering professionals so that their behavior benefits both the profession and society. where “Relevant persons” are those in a position to act in response. and respect for others. Accepting this principle is essential for ethics to discern an objective reality rather than just define a subjective standard. duties. - - The Existence of Right and Wrong Principle: Certain aspects of right and wrong exist objectively. duties.Prudence (mind): to think about a moral problem clearly and completely . self-respect.
Ethics and Law .Law – the authority is external . acquire more information if necessary. You may find that the problem is more (or less) serious than originally thought.Ethics – the authority is internal Much of law. MSc| III year KCT rd . or indifferent. and approval. but not all. sometimes law is unethical Much of what is ethical is unaddressed by legal rules Professional Ethics and Law There is a moral duty to obey the law (with some caveats) Professional ethics covers more issues than the law One can be unethical without behaving illegally Rare – ethically must resist the law Note: Be very careful not to embark in an exercise in ethical analysis when there is a clear legal rule in the situation that trumps the entire process of ethical analysis. Often the gaps between legal rules require one to switch to an ethical analysis. Evergiste.Morality: concerns the goodness of voluntary human activity that impacts the self or other living beings. Moral Responsibility: . we have complete moral responsibility for what we do with adequate knowledge.- Fortitude (emotions): control aversion for negative emotions Justice (will): choose according to truth and fairness. powerless. Be very careful not to assume that there is a legal rule for every situation. .Assuming we have not deliberately allowed ourselves to remain ignorant. Ethical Decision Making Model The following steps are recommended to help you determine your optimum course of action when confronted with an ethical problem: a) Evaluate all of the information you have available. freedom. 5|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. is based in morality but. 3. b) Consider how your decision might affect all of your constituencies independent of how it affects you.
MSc| III year KCT rd . Pride: I feel good about myself. a neighbor. 4.1 Five Principles of Ethical Power for Individuals: i. No matter what happens. Persistence: I stick to my purpose. "Never! Never!. Never! Never! Give up!" v. but you should try. Principles of Ethical Power for Individuals and organizations: 4. I don’t need everything to happen right now. I am at peace with what comes my way. iii. Imagine yourself in another position such as a different company. d) Determine the best course of action (judgment) that takes into account your relevant values and constituencies’ interests. You may not be able to satisfy everyone's concerns. Purpose: The mission of our organization is communicated from the top. look myself straight in the eye. 6|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. we can resist temptations to behave unethically. ii. ii.2 Five Principles of Ethical Power for Organizations: i. When two or more values are seemingly in conflict you should rank your ethical obligations according to your own moral principles. especially when it seem inconvenient to do so! My behavior is consistent with my intentions. Patience: I believe that things will eventually work out well. Perspective: I take time to enter each day quietly in a mood of reflection. Our organization is guided by the values. A balanced self-esteem keeps my ego and my desire to be accepted from influencing my decisions. Evergiste. and feel good about myself. 4. I let my conscience be my guide. I don’t need the acceptance of other people to feel important. This helps me to get myself focused and allows me to listen to my inner self and to see things more clearly.c) Consider what ethical values are relevant to the situation. hopes and a vision that helps us to determine what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior. I am always able to face the mirror. We know that when we feel this way. Pride: We feel proud of ourselves and of our organization. Purpose: I see myself as being an ethically sound person. iv. or a regulatory agency. As Churchill said. accepted codes of engineering conduct and the law.
and stand for what is right. Moral Values adapted from The Ethics Challenge and Controlling Technology Your Value Honesty Integrity Respect for Individuals. Supporting the professional and technical societies of their disciplines. and 4. Perspective: Our managers and employees take time to pause and reflect. v. Obey all the laws of the countries in which you do business and to do you part to make the communities in which you work and live a better place to be. and seek clarification and guidance whenever there is doubt. and serving with fidelity the public. updating your engineering (or other) skills as necessary. to be honest and forthright with one another and with our customers. Evergiste. candid communication. This involves maintaining a balance between obtaining results and caring how we achieve these results. teamwork and open.iii. The fundamental principles of ethics for engineers Engineers Uphold and advance the integrity. deliver what you promise. Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. Recognize and report your limitations. Being honest and impartial. MSc| III year KCT rd Citizenship Competence 7|Page . Using their knowledge and skill for the enhancement of human welfare. suppliers. including violations of laws. communities. Patience: We believe that holding to our ethical values will lead us to success in the long term. Reliably perform tasks in your areas of specialization. 5. their employers and clients: 3. regulations and company policies. take stock of where we are. evaluate where we are going and determine how we are going to get there. Promote the long-term stability of civilization and the environment. appreciating the diversity of our workforce and the uniqueness of each individual. We make sure our actions are consistent with our purpose. Speak up without fear of retribution and report concerns in the work place. iv. Striving to increase the competence and prestige of the engineering profession. Say what you mean. Human Life. Build confidence through fairplay. Be involved in life-long learning. and shareholders. Persistence: We have a commitment to live by ethical principles. and Posterity Trustworthiness & Fairplay Responsibility Your Behavior Be truthful in all our endeavors. Treat one another with dignity and fairness. 2. We are committed to our commitment. honor and dignity of the engineering profession by: 1.
fairness. Produce reliable products and services.Common Constituencies adapted from The Ethics Challenge. Analysis. Such guidelines are partially based on ethical codes developed by engineering societies. on-time delivery. and welfare. avoid waste in the consumption of non-renewable. Act as concerned and responsible neighbors. so as to maintain the aura of professionalism throughout the engineering discipline. Exercise prudence in the use of natural resources. Respect individuals. Exercise prudence in the use of assets and resources Allow for fair competition. Accordingly. and fair prices." Engineering is an important and learned profession. Provide a safe and healthy environment. engineers are expected to exhibit the highest standards of honesty and integrity. the services provided by engineers require honesty. and Design of Chemical Processes. and so it is implicit in both the ethical codes and engineering ethics. As members of this profession. engineering professionals are in service to society. Engineering has a direct and vital impact on the quality of life for all people. Engineers must perform under a standard of professional behavior that requires adherence to the highest principles of ethical conduct. Evergiste. Synthesis. most notably the National Society of Professional Engineers. and Process Design Principles Your Constituency Employees/ Colleagues /Coworkers Customers/Clients Communities/Public Shareholders Suppliers Environment Your Behavior Be fair. MSc| III year KCT rd . that the public good should be placed above the personal interest of engineers. Codes of ethics also may encourage engineers to behave in a manner that benefits both the profession and society. 8|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. Pursue sound growth and earnings objectives. safety. impartiality. Code of Ethics for Engineers according to NSPE "The application of engineering ethics provides a consensus on the morality of engineering decisions and defines guidelines for moral conduct by all engineering professionals. natural resources 6. and equity. and must be dedicated to the protection of the public health. Above all else.
health and welfare of the public in the performance of their professional duties. data. a) If engineers’ judgment is overruled under circumstances that endanger life or property. 6. 5. d) Engineers shall not permit the use of their name or associate in business ventures with any person or firm that they believe is engaged in fraudulent or dishonest enterprise.1 Fundamental Canons 1. and welfare of the public. Engineers shall perform services only in the areas of their competence.2 Rules of Practice 1. 9|Page Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. Engineers shall act in such a manner as to uphold and enhance the honor. f) Engineers having knowledge of any alleged violation of this Code shall report thereon to appropriate professional bodies and. 3. c) Engineers shall not reveal facts. health.6. Engineers shall build their professional reputation on the merit of their services and shall not compete unfairly with others. Engineers shall hold paramount the safety. they shall notify their employer or client and such other authority as may be appropriate. integrity and dignity of the profession. and shall avoid conflicts of interest. 7. also to public authorities. Engineers shall issue public statements only in an objective and truthful manner. trustees. e) Engineers shall not aid or abet the unlawful practice of engineering by a person or firm. you have the knowledge and conviction that you have a professional and moral responsibility to yourselves and to your fellow human beings to defend the truth and expose any questionable practice that will lead to an unsafe product or process. Engineers shall hold paramount the safety. Engineers shall continue their professional development throughout their careers and shall provide opportunities for the professional development of those engineers under their supervision. 2. MSc| III year KCT rd . or information without the prior consent of the client or employer except as authorized or required by law or this Code. Evergiste. Engineers shall perform services only in the areas of their competence. and cooperate with the proper authorities in furnishing such information or assistance as may be required. 4. b) Engineers shall approve only those engineering documents that are in conformity with applicable standards. Engineers shall act in professional matters for each employer or client as faithful agents or 6. 2. Note: With this. when relevant.
MSc| III year KCT rd . or arguments on technical matters that are inspired or paid for by interested parties. e) Engineers shall not solicit or accept a contract from a governmental body on which a principal or officer of their organization serves as a member. unless they have prefaced their comments by explicitly identifying the interested parties on whose behalf they are speaking. b) Engineers may express publicly technical opinions that are founded upon knowledge of the facts and competence in the subject matter. from outside agents in connection with the work for which they are responsible. c) Engineers may accept assignments and assume responsibility for coordination of an entire project and sign and seal the engineering documents for the entire project. 10 | P a g e Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. c) Engineers shall not solicit or accept financial or other valuable consideration. provided that each technical segment is signed and sealed only by the qualified engineers who prepared the segment. b) Engineers shall not affix their signatures to any plans or documents dealing with subject matter in which they lack competence. or for services pertaining to the same project. a) Engineers shall disclose all known or potential conflicts of interest that could influence or appear to influence their judgment or the quality of their services. financial or otherwise. which should bear the date indicating when it was current. from more than one party for services on the same project. and by revealing the existence of any interest the engineers may have in the matters. unless the circumstances are fully disclosed and agreed to by all interested parties. d) Engineers in public service as members. c) Engineers shall issue no statements. They shall include all relevant and pertinent information in such reports. 4. statements. a) Engineers shall be objective and truthful in professional reports. Evergiste. Engineers shall avoid deceptive acts. or testimony.a) Engineers shall undertake assignments only when qualified by education or experience in the specific technical fields involved. criticisms. nor to any plan or document not prepared under their direction and control. advisors. Engineers shall act for each employer or client as faithful agents or trustees. 5. directly or indirectly. statements. or employees of a governmental or quasigovernmental body or department shall not participate in decisions with respect to services solicited or provided by them or their organizations in private or public engineering practice. 3. or testimony. Engineers shall issue public statements only in an objective and truthful manner. b) Engineers shall not accept compensation.
e) Engineers shall not promote their own interest at the expense of the dignity and integrity of the profession. career guidance for youths. MSc| III year KCT rd . they shall notify the proper authorities and withdraw from further service on the project. a) Engineers are encouraged to participate in civic affairs. or brokerage fee in order to secure work. any contribution to influence the award of a contract by public authority.a) Engineers shall not falsify their qualifications or permit misrepresentation of their or their associates’ qualifications. give. c) Engineers shall not accept outside employment to the detriment of their regular work or interest. b) Engineers shall not offer. percentage.2 Professional Obligations 1. solicit. 2. c) Engineers are encouraged to extend public knowledge and appreciation of engineering and its achievements. Engineers shall at all times strive to serve the public interest. b) Engineers shall not complete. or receive. 11 | P a g e Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. b) Engineers shall advise their clients or employers when they believe a project will not be successful. and well-being of their community. joint venturers. employees. and work for the advancement of the safety. except to a bona fide employee or bona fide established commercial or marketing agencies retained by them. or past accomplishments. Engineers shall be guided in all their relations by the highest standards of honesty and integrity. a) Engineers shall acknowledge their errors and shall not distort or alter the facts. d) Engineers shall not attempt to attract an engineer from another employer by false or misleading pretenses. If the client or employer insists on such unprofessional conduct. either directly or indirectly. Evergiste. they will notify their employers. 6. sign. They shall not offer any gift or other valuable consideration in order to secure work. or which may be reasonably construed by the public as having the effect or intent of influencing the awarding of a contract. health. Before accepting any outside engineering employment. associates. Brochures or other presentations incident to the solicitation of employment shall not misrepresent pertinent facts concerning employers. or seal plans and/or specifications that are not in conformity with applicable engineering standards. They shall not pay a commission. They shall not misrepresent or exaggerate their responsibility in or for the subject matter of prior assignments.
Engineers shall not attempt to obtain employment or advancement or professional engagements by untruthfully criticizing other engineers. 3. Engineers shall not disclose. from contractors or other parties dealing with clients or employers of the engineer in connection with work for which the engineer is responsible. Engineers shall not be influenced in their professional duties by conflicting interests. propose. 12 | P a g e Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. or public body on which they serve. including free engineering designs. Engineers shall avoid all conduct or practice that deceives the public. Evergiste. engineers may advertise for recruitment of personnel. from material or equipment suppliers for specifying their product. but such articles shall not imply credit to the author for work performed by others. without the consent of all interested parties. participate in or represent an adversary interest in connection with a specific project or proceeding in which the engineer has gained particular specialized knowledge on behalf of a former client or employer. without consent. confidential information concerning the business affairs or technical processes of any present or former client or employer. 5. a) Engineers shall not.d) Engineers are encouraged to adhere to the principles of sustainable development in order to protect the environment for future generations. c) Consistent with the foregoing. or accept a commission on a contingent basis under circumstances in which their judgment may be compromised. 6. b) Consistent with the foregoing. MSc| III year KCT rd . without the consent of all interested parties. a) Engineers shall avoid the use of statements containing a material misrepresentation of fact or omitting a material fact. engineers may prepare articles for the lay or technical press. a) Engineers shall not request. a) Engineers shall not accept financial or other considerations. directly or indirectly. b) Engineers shall not. b) Engineers shall not accept commissions or allowances. 4. or by other improper or questionable methods. promote or arrange for new employment or practice in connection with a specific project for which the engineer has gained particular and specialized knowledge.
13 | P a g e Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. MSc| III year KCT rd . name the person or persons who may be individually responsible for designs. where the engineer’s interests cannot otherwise be protected. directly or indirectly. b) Engineers in governmental. Evergiste. maliciously or falsely. 8. or office facilities of an employer to carry on outside private practice. and will recognize the proprietary interests of others. a) Engineers shall. c) Engineers shall not. or employment of other engineers. or partnership as a “cloak” for unethical acts. a corporation. supplies. or unless the connection of such engineer with the work has been terminated. that engineers may seek indemnification for services arising out of their practice for other than gross negligence. use equipment. Engineers who believe others are guilty of unethical or illegal practice shall present such information to the proper authority for action. 9. without consent. provided. industrial. a) Engineers shall conform with state registration laws in the practice of engineering. practice. c) Engineers in sales or industrial employ are entitled to make engineering comparisons of represented products with products of other suppliers. Engineers shall not attempt to injure. writings. a) Engineers in private practice shall not review the work of another engineer for the same client. however.b) Engineers in salaried positions shall accept part-time engineering work only to the extent consistent with policies of the employer and in accordance with ethical considerations. whenever possible. or other accomplishments. prospects. except with the knowledge of such engineer. b) Engineers shall not use association with a nonengineer. or educational employ are entitled to review and evaluate the work of other engineers when so required by their employment duties. the professional reputation. 7. Engineers shall accept personal responsibility for their professional activities. Engineers shall give credit for engineering work to those to whom credit is due. inventions. b) Engineers using designs supplied by a client recognize that the designs remain the property of the client and may not be duplicated by the engineer for others without express permission. laboratory.
MSc| III year KCT rd . 14 | P a g e Engineering Ethics Lecture Notes By Eng M. and attending professional meetings and seminars. data. or other records that may justify copyrights or patents. records. should enter into a positive agreement regarding ownership. plans. d) Engineers’ designs.c) Engineers. designs. participating in continuing education courses. before undertaking work for others in connection with which the engineer may make improvements. and notes referring exclusively to an employer’s work are the employer’s property. e) Engineers shall continue their professional development throughout their careers and should keep current in their specialty fields by engaging in professional practice. The employer should indemnify the engineer for use of the information for any purpose other than the original purpose. inventions. Evergiste. reading in the technical literature.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.