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Chapter: Professional Ethics in Engineering : Responsibilities and Rights

Important Questions and Answers: Responsibilities and Rights

Professional Ethics in Engineering - Responsibilities and Rights - Important Questions and Answers: Responsibilities and Rights


1. Define Collegiality.


Collegiality is a kind of connectedness grounded in respect for professional expertise and in a commitment to the goals and values of the profession and collegiality includes a disposition to support and cooperate with one‘s colleagues.


2. What are the central elements of collegiality?

i. Respect

ii. Commitment

iii. Connectedness

iv. Cooperation

3. What are the two senses of Loyalty?


i. Agency Loyalty – Acting to fulfill one‘s contractual duties to an employer. It‘s a matter of actions, whatever its motives.


ii. Identification Loyalty – Has as much as to do with attitudes, emotions, and a sense of personal identity as it does with actions.


4. When may an Identification Loyalty be said as obligatory?


i.   Employees must see some of their own important goals as met by and through a group in which they participate.


ii. Employees must be treated fairly, each receiving his or her share of benefits and burdens.


5.    What is the relationship between the Loyalty to the company and Professional responsibility to the public?


i. Acting on professional commitments to the public can be a more effective way to serve a company than a mere willingness to follow company orders.


ii. Loyalty to companies or their current owners should not be equated with merely obeying one‘s immediate supervisor.


iii. An engineer might have professional obligations to both an employer and to the public that reinforce rather than contradict each other.


6. Define Institutional Authority?


Institutional Authority is acquired, exercised and defined within organizations. It may be defined as the institutional right given to a person to exercise power based on the resources of the institution.


7. Define Expert Authority?


Expert authority is the possession of special knowledge, skill or competence to perform task or give sound advice.


8. What is the basic moral task of salaried engineers?


The basic moral task of salaried engineers is to be aware of their obligations to obey employers on one hand and to protect and serve the public and clients of the other.


9. What are the guidelines to reach an agreement?

i. Attack problem and not people.


ii. Build trust.


iii.  Start with a discussion and analysis of interests, concerns, needs. It begin with interests, not positions or solutions.


v. Brainstorm; suggesting an idea does not mean one aggress with it. Develop multiple options.

vi.Use objective criteria whenever possible. Agree on how something will be measured.


10.            What are the essential elements of IPR?

i. Patents


ii. Copyrights

 iii. Trademarks

 iv. Trade secrets


11. What are the criteria for identifying that information is “labelled” confidential at the workplace?


i. Engineers shall treat information coming to them in the course of their as confidential.


ii. Identify any information which if it became known would cause harm to the corporation or client.


iii. Confidential information is any information that the employer or client would like to have kept secret in order to compete effectively against business rivals.


12.            What are the terms associated with Confidentiality?

i. Privileged Information

ii. Proprietary Information

iii. Patents

iv.Trade secrets


13.            How will you justify the obligation of confidentiality?


The obligation of confidentiality can be justified at two levels. FIRST Level : Moral Considerations


Respect for autonomy Respect for promises Regard for public well-being


SECOND Level : Major Ethical Theories Rights Ethicists


Duty Ethicists Rule-utilitarians Act-utilitarians

14.            Define Conflicts of Interest?


Conflict of interests is a situation in which two or more interests are not simultaneously realizable. It is the disagreement between public obligation and self-interest of an official.


15.            Why does a conflict of interests arise?


a. Financial Investments


b. Insider Trading c. Bribe


d. Gifts

e. Kickbacks


16.            What is a Bribe?


A Bribe is a substantial amount of money or goods offered beyond a stated business contract with the aim of winning an advantage in gaining or keeping the contract.


17. What is called „White-collar crime‟?


Occupational crimes are illegal acts made possible through one‘s lawful employment. It is the secret violation of laws regulating work activities. When committed by office workers of professionals, occupational crime is called ‗white-collar crime‘.


18. What is called Kickbacks?


Prearranged payments made by contractors to companies or their representatives in exchange for contracts actually granted are called kickbacks.


19.         What are the types of Conflicts of interest?

i. Actual conflict of interest


ii. Potential conflict of interest

 iii. Apparent conflict of interest


20.         How will you solve the Conflict problems?

i. Finding the creative middle way.


ii. Employing Lower-level considerations.

iii. Making the hard choice.


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