A case study on Professional Environments- Ethics, Professionalism and Governance

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Professional Environments

Ethics, Professionalism and Governance


Ethical decision making is very much needed for professionals from all disciplines and all walks of life in general. Ethical decision making based on critical insight into the ethical factors and analysis of the same based on the ethical code of conduct makes up an important aspect of decision making and works as a ready help took the kit for resolving the ethical dilemmas in general. The following part of the solution is provided with a review for the case study-3. Recommendations are provided to resolve the ethical dilemma being faced by James in this case study. Chris Mac Donald's approach is employed here to resolve the dilemma of James. 



James is contracted by a web-design consultancy company to interview the staff to ascertain their knowledge and capabilities. The purpose is to provide the training and to work on to enable them to overcome their weaknesses. James is advised to keep the collected information private. However VP approached him and asked who did well, the ethical dilemma James now facing is whether to reveal or not? How should he deal with the situation?



Moral Dimension

Revealing information to VP is not morally acceptable, this is the breach of confidence and trust of other stakeholders interviewed by James. He needs to inform the sensitive and confidential information to VP. 

Interested parties

His immediate boss is the stakeholder who needs his recommendations, further, James is informed of keeping the data collected as private and confidential. VP is not directly contracted with James to get the inner details of the interviews or the summary of weaknesses. James is obligated by the organization only to give recommendations for training needs. There is no need for him to reveal any type of information like who did best etc. Hence it is not needed by James to follow the case. 


Trust, integrity, honesty are some of the ethical values involved in this crisis. If James reveals out the confidential information, he is breaching these ethical values. There is no question of helping out anybody as well no scope of personal autonomy involved in the case. Hence it is a pure case of a values-based decision and James should not mend to reveal the details to VP. 

Benefits Vs burdens

As such there is no any benefit to the cause of his contract, there are no added benefits as well there is no scope for any type of advantages to the stakeholders in this project by revealing the information. However, it can add as a burden if the information is leaked and this may affect the organization in future. Employees may feel that their rights are breached and it may cause emotional damage to them. 

Analogous cases

There are similar instances many available in ethics study, where the subject can stick to the moral and ethical values and can resist the action of his superiors or other stakeholders. So James can simply resist the ethical breach and can continue to remain confined to his ethical principles.

Discussion with others

James in the extreme case can inform the organizational management about the proceedings and can inform them of his decision not to reveal the confidential information and can support the values and ethics which prompted him to take this decision. 



It is against the interests of the organization to breach the privacy and to reveal the confidential information. Hence it is not outright to reveal the private and confidential information to VP. If it is mandatory, he needs to think of the issue several times before crossing the legalities of the question.


Comfortability with the decision 

Yes, James can think of his comfortability with the decision and he can introspect if there is any reason to oblige the request of VP (Valesquez 2009). 






ACS code of ethics (ACS):

There is need to upkeep the quality of life of the people, they should not be impacted by the decisions and their life quality should not be disturbed by our work. James should not impact the quality of life of the employees who are interviewed by revealing the confidential information to others.

James is not obligated to reveal the information and he can keep up his honesty in the presentation of skills, knowledge and services. So he need breach the code and inform VP of the inner information. 

Professionalism means integrity and character and James is expected to keep his professionalism by not succumbing to the external pressures, he can keep his dignity and keep the ethics of work intact by not mending to VP request. 


Typical clauses that support James decision

? refrain from any conduct or action in your professional role which may tarnish the image of the profession or detract from the good name of the ACS;

? have pride in your profession, and protect and promote professionalism in ICT

? reject, and will not make, any offer of bribery or inducement;

? understand, and give due regard to, the perceptions of those affected by your work; and

? endeavour to preserve the confidentiality and privacy of the information of others.(Public interest)




James can refrain from revealing the information which VP requested and he can remain committed to his obligation of not revealing the insider information to others. Finally, James need not breach the ethics and can work to keep up his integrity. 

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