Proposed Changes to IEEE Code of Ethics

Comments to the changes needed by 7 November

10 September 2013

The IEEE Board of Directors at its meeting of 1 July 2013 approved the following resolutions:

“Resolved that the following resolutions shall be, and are hereby, approved:

Resolved that, in accordance with Section 7.8 of the IEEE Policies, the publisher of THE INSTITUTE is instructed to include, both in its August 2013 online version and the September 2013 print version, copies of the proposed changes in the IEEE Code of Ethics presented to this meeting with a request for comment thereon; and further

Resolved, that all IEEE Major Board shall have the opportunity to discuss proposed changes prior to final action by the IEEE Board of Directors; and further

Resolved, that this Board shall engage in final consideration of such changes to the IEEE Code of Ethics at its November 2013 meeting.”

The following is the IEEE Code of Ethics, marked to show the proposed changes and published for comment in accordance with Section 7.8 of the IEEE Policies:

“We, the members of the IEEE, in recognition of the importance of our technologies in affecting the quality of life throughout the world, and in accepting a personal obligation to our profession, its members and the communities we serve, do hereby commit ourselves to the highest ethical and professional conduct and agree:

  • to accept responsibility in making decisions consistent with the safety, health, and welfare of the public, and to disclose promptly factors that might endanger the public or the environment;
  • to avoid real or perceived conflicts of interest whenever possible, and to disclose them to affected parties when they do exist;
  • to be honest and realistic in stating claims or estimates based on available data; 
  • to reject bribery in all its forms; 
  • to improve the understanding of technology; its appropriate application, and potential consequences; 
  • to maintain and improve our technical competence and to undertake technological tasks for others only if qualified by training or experience, or after full disclosure of pertinent limitations; 
  • to seek, accept, and offer honest criticism of technical work, to acknowledge and correct errors, and to credit properly the contributions of others;
  • to treat fairly all persons and to not engage in acts of discrimination based on regardless of such factors as race, religion, gender, disability, age, or national origin, or sexual orientation;
  • to avoid injuring others, their property, reputation, or employment by false or malicious action;
  • to assist colleagues and co-workers in their professional development and to support them in following this code of ethics.”

Comments on the foregoing change should be directed to IEEE Director Parviz Famouri at p.famouri@ieee.org or IEEE Director Karen S. Pedersen at kspedersen@ieee.org, on or before 7 November 2013.

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