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Topics: Ethics
Is there a need to change the PMI Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct? Is it outdated and missing any elements?
The current Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct was approved by the PMI Board of Directors in October 2006.

Since then the world has changed and with the Covid-19 event even more in an accelerated manner.

Are there any aspects missing in the current code and does it need to be modified to suit the current environment as well as future requirements?
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Jun 12, 2020 3:40 PM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
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I do not say ehics codes are a laws. I am saying that ethics codes must be actionable by laws. If not, they are waste or just a requirement to be fullfil to get some type of cetifications be recognized by international audit requirements. Is it because Sergio Conte said that? Not. It is because it is a framework recognized by international laws. So, if we will not discuss this in the professional framework then it has no sense. PMI code of ethics is just because the need to fullfil a requirement because the need to their certifications being recognized. No more than that. All other things are mere hypocrisy. If not, why the PMI do not said nothing about PMs who are PMP certified and work into projects that are creating massive destuction weapons and things like that? If we want to contribute to make project management a profession then we need to stop with the hypocrisy. Show me a sanction from the PMI that stop a person who owns the PMP certification to perform the project manager role. By the way, please, I do not say you or other I do not know are hypocrite. In the case of PMI I think it seems to behave with hypocrasy because the intention to keep the business running. At the end, the debate must be in the framework to evaluate if something is a profession or not and all you need to understand to evaluate that is there. But if the people like to keep the debate inside the personal perception not the professional framework not problem with that,
Hi Sergio

the latest public sanction for a PM is here
https://www.pmi.org/about/ethics/public-reprimand

While PMI cannot stop anyone to continue to offer their services, this amounts to a hurdle to be able to do that.

It is may be a language issue, but there are no international laws dealing with ethics, or name one.

Ethical sanctions are issued not by jurisdiction of nation states but by professional bodies (that’s what I meant by ethic codes are no laws).

Only these can have an international impact, but most professions do it an a national base, if they have a national registry. Those ‚real‘ professions are nationalied.
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1 reply by Sergio Luis Conte
Jun 12, 2020 6:51 PM
Sergio Luis Conte
...
The medical, laws, engineering itself have code of ethics that penalize a bad practice making legal actions that implies the person who do that will not perform the profession any more and the credential is retired with add they must face judgment. That´s what do a profession a real profession. In fact, a person who have a medical, law or engineering credential owned in one country can not perform the profession in other country without revalidating it. Again, it has no sense to continue the debate if we are not aware about this things just in case we want to sustain the debate in that framework. All related to PMI must not be consider as a real profession in the framework of a real profession mean which is mainly driven by the credential level and the code of ethics a credential owner must swear to defend. That´s no problem I have 3 certifications that belongs to the PMI. But if we will make a real debate of sensible things like ethics that debate must be taken seriously where seriously mean to adhere to international standards. And the key question nobody has answer me: what about those project managers who are PMP certified and contributes to, for example, create massive destruction weapons ? Are they adhere to the PMI´s code of ethics? If not, the PMI has made some action on them?. Just in case the PMI made some action, have they stopped to work on that?. So, in my humble opinion, is not serious to debate about Code of Ethics if we do not avoid hypocrisy. I participated on create credential certifications from some well known organizations then I have studied about the point.
Jun 12, 2020 4:28 PM
Replying to Thomas Walenta
...
Hi Sergio

the latest public sanction for a PM is here
https://www.pmi.org/about/ethics/public-reprimand

While PMI cannot stop anyone to continue to offer their services, this amounts to a hurdle to be able to do that.

It is may be a language issue, but there are no international laws dealing with ethics, or name one.

Ethical sanctions are issued not by jurisdiction of nation states but by professional bodies (that’s what I meant by ethic codes are no laws).

Only these can have an international impact, but most professions do it an a national base, if they have a national registry. Those ‚real‘ professions are nationalied.
The medical, laws, engineering itself have code of ethics that penalize a bad practice making legal actions that implies the person who do that will not perform the profession any more and the credential is retired with add they must face judgment. That´s what do a profession a real profession. In fact, a person who have a medical, law or engineering credential owned in one country can not perform the profession in other country without revalidating it. Again, it has no sense to continue the debate if we are not aware about this things just in case we want to sustain the debate in that framework. All related to PMI must not be consider as a real profession in the framework of a real profession mean which is mainly driven by the credential level and the code of ethics a credential owner must swear to defend. That´s no problem I have 3 certifications that belongs to the PMI. But if we will make a real debate of sensible things like ethics that debate must be taken seriously where seriously mean to adhere to international standards. And the key question nobody has answer me: what about those project managers who are PMP certified and contributes to, for example, create massive destruction weapons ? Are they adhere to the PMI´s code of ethics? If not, the PMI has made some action on them?. Just in case the PMI made some action, have they stopped to work on that?. So, in my humble opinion, is not serious to debate about Code of Ethics if we do not avoid hypocrisy. I participated on create credential certifications from some well known organizations then I have studied about the point.
Hi Sergio,

even the medical profession is self-regulating and not fully regulated by law.

"Most objective observers in the early part of the 21st century have returned to the belief that the results of self-regulation are ultimately superior to those of external regulation"

https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/artic...allenge/2005-04

Regulation in that context means judging ethical breaches.
Yes, if you were sanctioned in one country and you apply in another country you may be asked if you were sanctioned before, but what if this sanction was not public?

If there were a global regulatory body, like PMI has, national law, courts and regulatory bodies do not hinder a protection of the public globally.

Your point of PMs working on 'unethical' projects like for WMD is well taken and touches the feelings of fairness, respect and responsibility. It is not yet covered by language in PMI's Code though, similarily to what Tejas brought up with sustainability
(it was discussed though when creating the code, I attended a focus group in 2004/5 that included that issue). The PMI Code is strictly relating to an individual's behavior, not to the behavior of a project or organization.

This is a sensitive area though, because you could extend it to any military or weapons projects, or any projects that produce something with dis-benefits to others (like a layoff program).
Mostly this sensitivity is born out of the balance between the values of fairness/equality and responsibility (to protect your nation).

It is interesting that recently tech companies decided not to sell facial recognition systems to government (any more) - the value of fairness was judged to be more important than that of responsibility.
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1 reply by Sergio Luis Conte
Jun 15, 2020 9:22 AM
Sergio Luis Conte
...
All code of conducts are about individual. For those that are actionable by laws when somebody make a bad practice the license is retired then you have not a license to show in other country. Including it the license is retired by the organization itself. "Behind the truth is always the truth". Government do not need to sell facial recognition and other devices because they have the knowledge and they can create it. Is not new. I was in touch with that when I researched about object orientation and artificial intelligence in 1989 and I participated into the OOSPLA. So, again, from my side is simple: regarding to code of conduct there are two levels. One which is created just to get a certification recognized by international organizations and the other which is created to make a profession a real profession in the framework which other well known interntational organizations make by regulation. I have no problem with one of the other. My point is the debate about code of ethics and ethics inside the PMI has not sense beyond to open a debate that could be useful but is not changing the things.
Jun 14, 2020 8:26 AM
Replying to Thomas Walenta
...
Hi Sergio,

even the medical profession is self-regulating and not fully regulated by law.

"Most objective observers in the early part of the 21st century have returned to the belief that the results of self-regulation are ultimately superior to those of external regulation"

https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/artic...allenge/2005-04

Regulation in that context means judging ethical breaches.
Yes, if you were sanctioned in one country and you apply in another country you may be asked if you were sanctioned before, but what if this sanction was not public?

If there were a global regulatory body, like PMI has, national law, courts and regulatory bodies do not hinder a protection of the public globally.

Your point of PMs working on 'unethical' projects like for WMD is well taken and touches the feelings of fairness, respect and responsibility. It is not yet covered by language in PMI's Code though, similarily to what Tejas brought up with sustainability
(it was discussed though when creating the code, I attended a focus group in 2004/5 that included that issue). The PMI Code is strictly relating to an individual's behavior, not to the behavior of a project or organization.

This is a sensitive area though, because you could extend it to any military or weapons projects, or any projects that produce something with dis-benefits to others (like a layoff program).
Mostly this sensitivity is born out of the balance between the values of fairness/equality and responsibility (to protect your nation).

It is interesting that recently tech companies decided not to sell facial recognition systems to government (any more) - the value of fairness was judged to be more important than that of responsibility.
All code of conducts are about individual. For those that are actionable by laws when somebody make a bad practice the license is retired then you have not a license to show in other country. Including it the license is retired by the organization itself. "Behind the truth is always the truth". Government do not need to sell facial recognition and other devices because they have the knowledge and they can create it. Is not new. I was in touch with that when I researched about object orientation and artificial intelligence in 1989 and I participated into the OOSPLA. So, again, from my side is simple: regarding to code of conduct there are two levels. One which is created just to get a certification recognized by international organizations and the other which is created to make a profession a real profession in the framework which other well known interntational organizations make by regulation. I have no problem with one of the other. My point is the debate about code of ethics and ethics inside the PMI has not sense beyond to open a debate that could be useful but is not changing the things.
It should be included in the Responsibility section.
...
1 reply by Thomas Walenta
Jun 25, 2020 11:10 AM
Thomas Walenta
...
Makes sense. Sustainability is a result of our decisions and actions and responsibility means we own our decisions and actions and their consequences.
Jun 25, 2020 9:44 AM
Replying to Tejas Sura
...
It should be included in the Responsibility section.
Makes sense. Sustainability is a result of our decisions and actions and responsibility means we own our decisions and actions and their consequences.
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