Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Link of the Week: CSEP's Codes of Ethics Online

Business Ethics, Corporate Responsibility, Fair Trade, Whistle-Blowing, Fiduciary Obligation, Product Safety--Terms like these are bandied about a great deal....especially since scandals like Enron and WorldCom and Mattel's lead toys have come to light in recent years. But how do you codify what a professional or a corporation owes to their clients, customers, workers, or shareholders?

Codes of Ethics are designed to help, before it reaches the point of legislation and litigation.

In June 1996, the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions (located at the Illinois Institute of Technology) received a grant from the National Science Foundation to put their extensive collection of codes of ethics on the web. This web collection includes over 850 codes of ethics of professional societies, corporations, government, and academic institutions. Earlier versions of some codes of ethics of some organizations represented are also available so researchers can study the development of codes. A literature review, an introduction to the codes, and a User Guide are also available at the site. And the Center maintains links to other web resources, too.

You can either browse the "Index of Codes," which is organized by professional category, or you can use a customized Google to search across all the content at the website.

Whether you are a philosophy student, a management or business law major, or merely an interested consumer, this website might be worth a look.

CSEP's Codes of Ethics Online is but one of many websites that we have included in our Business Ethics Resource Guide, which lists database, web, and print resources that would helpful for anyone interested in business ethics. Consult this guide, or browse through our other guides for research guidance on other disciplines and topics. And remember, you can always come and talk to us about your latest research project at the Reference Desk!

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